As with any surgical procedure, the possibility of complications or side effects after a hair transplant is a common concern. As your surgeon will tell you prior to the procedure, there are a number of potential problems you could face during the healing process or further down the line, but it’s important not to let these put you off of your decision. In fact, some issues, such as shock loss, are common in hair transplant patients and shouldn’t trigger as much concern as they do.
Shock loss could take place after a hair transplant has been completed but isn’t a permanent issue. To help you understand what to expect, we have detailed this prevalent issue and explained why it provides no immediate cause for concern.
What is “Shock Loss?”
Every single hair transplant procedure here at Longevita will see detailed work completed by the most highly-trained professionals we have on our staff. Your surgeon will make accurate extractions of hair from donor areas and then transplant them with equal precision into any thinning or balding areas. However, even the most skilled surgeons can’t prevent every side-effect.
On rare occasions, the action or extracting and transplanting hair can lead to the loss of healthy hair just days after the initial surgery has taken place. This isn’t a bad transplant or damaged follicles in most cases – in fact, the issue has been given its very own name – “shock loss.”
Shock loss involves the loss of follicles within treated areas after transplantation, but it is important to note that this issue only affects around 5% of all patients and only takes a temporary effect. It is important to be aware that it is just the hair follicles which fall off as a result of the trauma which the scalp experiences as part of the surgery. The roots which are transplanted do not fall off and any lost hair will begin to grow stronger and healthier within just months after the issue takes place.
On the rare occasion that shock loss occurs, this is generally due to damage caused to nearby healthy follicles, stress to the scalp or simply a broken hair shaft. In order to prevent any complications, most surgeons will remove each hair one at a time using FUE methods, depending on your hair type. When taking strands of hair from a donor area, each strand will be taken using a punch device to ensure minimal movement during the procedure.
Unless every measure is taken when removing hairs, there is every possibility that you will have a negative impact on any follicles within the immediate vicinity, which could cause them to come out completely. Equal care needs to be taken in the case of the transplantation, especially within the area that is being transplanted. When the incision process is being undertaken, you could disrupt nearby follicles which can also lead to hairs falling out.
Statistically, women have experienced the shock loss phenomenon on a more frequent basis than men, but both genders are likely to see their hair return to normal in 2-4 week cycles after the initial hair loss. Once your scalp has healed and settled, you will be able to re-grow hair with the possibility of it being even thicker and more vibrant than before.
Should I Be Concerned About “Shock Loss?”
As we’ve already mentioned, there really is no need to be alarmed if you experience shock loss after a hair transplant. After a few days, your hair will completely regrow, leaving you with a full head of hair.
When the regrowth period takes place, don’t be concerned if you notice that your hairs initially appear thin and slightly colourless. Over the course of around a year, your hair will start to take on a much thicker and mature tone as it starts to fully grow. In order to maximise the process, you could use lotions and specialist products to help encourage your hair to grow at a much faster rate- you can speak to your consultant about this before or after the initial treatment to determine what is best for your hair type.
It is also important to note that any transplanted hairs are equally susceptible to shock loss and also provide no real calls for concern. They will simply fall out and then regrow into place within a four-month cycle. Any hair loss after a successful transplant is very much a rare occurrence and not something that many people ever have to deal with throughout their life. Shock loss is a perfectly natural part of all hair transplants. The only thing anyone can do when this takes place is to simply wait until it re-grows back into place.