What if My Treatment Plan Changes on Surgery Day?

Travelling abroad for your hair transplant might cause you to worry about the changes in your treatment plan because it can cost you more.

However, this doesn’t usually happen. Also, you can avoid getting yourself into that situation in the first place by knowing the scenarios that lead to it.

When Is The Treatment Plan Prepared?

Your medical travel plan is prepared after your initial consultation session. In this, your concern areas will be discussed, and we will ask you to send us pictures of your scalp.

These will be assessed by the surgeon, who will determine how many grafts will be extracted based on the balding area and strength of the donor area. 

It will take a few days to prepare this document as the surgeon needs to assess all the details.

If all goes well, everything will take place according to this, and you won’t have to pay anything more. Here, it should be noted that these treatment plans are also prepared with the hair type in mind.

So, if you have Afro hair, you’d be recommended an Afro hair transplant, which has a slightly different procedural process.  

What Causes A Hair Transplant Treatment Plan To Change? 

The details of your treatment can change because of the following reasons: 

Problems With Photos 

One inherent problem with virtual consultations is that there is some room for error. While high-quality photos are one way to make sure that this doesn’t happen, it is not infallible.

Sometimes, the problem is with the quality of photos or the angles at which they have been taken.

We do instruct the patients on how to take them, but if they’re edited in any way, that would affect the assessment by our surgeon. To avoid that, you should: 

  • Good, natural lighting
  • Get another person to take the pictures wherever possible
  • Use the best quality camera possible
  • Take them against a plain background
  • Photograph unstyled hair

And if that’s not happened, once you’ve arrived at the clinic for the surgery itself, the treatment plan will most likely change.

That’s because before the surgery takes place, the surgeon conducts a face-to-face consultation.

In that, the donor and balding areas are reassessed, so if anything’s different from the photos, it will mean a change in the treatment.  

Health Changes 

Before you undergo a hair transplant, it’s important that you’re in your best possible health.

However, if you fall sick before or after arriving in Turkey for your surgery, your hair transplant treatment plan is likely to change. 

For instance, if you have diabetes and your blood glucose levels aren’t regulated, then it’s quite possible that your surgery will be delayed.

Also, if you’re taking certain medications (blood thinners) before the surgery after falling ill, the surgery itself becomes risky, which is why it may also be delayed in that scenario.

If you have an active flare-up of lupus or psoriasis, the surgery will be delayed. 

If the time of the surgery coincides with abnormal hormonal fluctuations that cause permanent hair loss, your surgeon might recommend changes to the treatment plan.

That’s because hormonal changes can accelerate hair loss, in which case, you’ll end up needing more hair grafts.

However, since not every kind of hormonal hair loss is permanent, it just might be that your surgery is delayed until the underlying problem is treated. 

Surgery Delay 

It’s understandable that because of certain life changes, you may not want to go ahead with the surgery immediately. You can hold off on treatment for some time (even for years).

However, when you finally decide to have the procedure, the requirements of the surgery may differ.  

Hair loss can be progressive. Other than losing hair to androgenetic alopecia, you might lose it as a result of ageing. Together these things would mean changes to your donor and recipient areas.

The size of your balding area is likely to have increased, which would mean you’d need more hair grafts.

However, your donor areas might also have thinned out more, so the total number of grafts that can be extracted would need to be adjusted by the surgeon.  

Failed FOX Test 

As mentioned above, the Afro hair transplant may have a slightly different procedural process. That’s because before performing the surgery, the surgeon usually performs a “FOX test.”

This essentially determines how easy it is to extract the grafts from the scalp. It has 5 scores, which have been elaborated in a study published in the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

  • Score 1: The follicular unit comes out easily without any significant transection of the attached follicles. 
  • Score 2: Fat around the follicle is lost. If the person needs multiple sessions of hair transplant, donor scarring can make it difficult to extract grafts, and fewer of them will be viable.
  • Score 3: The angle at which the hair follicle is coming out is “difficult.” 
  • Score 4-5: The transection rate is high, and much of the graft is damaged. Not many viable grafts can be extracted, so the surgery is not suitable in this case. 

If the FOX test results in scores 1-3, it may be possible for you to undergo the surgery. However, if you have a 4-5 score, surgery is not recommended.

That’s because you’ll end up losing many of the hair grafts. This will not adequately cover the balding area, and the donor area will also be damaged permanently. 

This test takes place once you arrive at the clinic and have a face-to-face consultation with the surgeon. They’ll extract a few grafts to check the score and then let you know about it.

Unfortunately, if you have a high score, your treatment plan will change. You won’t be able to undergo hair transplant surgery.

False Medical History 

We understand how distressing hair loss can be, but if you falsify your medical records to get the surgery, it can be life-threatening.

Once you arrive at the clinic for the surgery, we will begin by taking your blood tests.

And if it is found that you have a health condition that makes you unsuitable for this kind of surgery, we will not proceed with it. And that would also change your treatment plan. 

Not Following Pre-Surgery Instructions

Before you come in for surgery, you’d have to stop smoking and drinking for a few days. You’ll also have to stop taking some medications and supplements.

If you don’t follow these pre-op instructions, the surgery might not be safe for you until a few days. So, you’ll have to wait for some time longer, which will entail changes to the treatment plan. 

Will Changes In Treatment Plan Cost You?

Many people worry about the additional costs that may be associated with changes in a treatment plan.

However, the truth is, you don’t always have to pay more. It comes down to the kind of changes that are going to take place. At Longevita, we already offer the maximum number of grafts. 

Therefore, if the treatment plan requires more grafts, then there will be no additional expense.

However, if a high hair density is to be achieved and you don’t have a large balding area, your surgeon may recommend a DHI hair transplant instead of a traditional FUE. In that case, you will have to pay more

It is possible that you won’t be charged additional fees if the treatment plan changes include additional balding areas.

If, for instance, you come in for a hairline transplant alone but require a crown transplant along with it, the crown transplant would not be charged.

If you’re ineligible for the surgery altogether, the cost of those services will be refunded to you.

You can, however, proceed with PRP injections if your surgeon determines that you could benefit from them. You’ll only be charged for those injections in this case. 

If you simply want to add other treatments to your hair transplant treatment plan, that will, of course, cost you more. You can get scalp micropigmentation, among other dental and cosmetic treatments. 

Keep in mind that if the duration of the stay changes because of this, the hotels, transfers, flight cancellation fee, and other consumables will cost you. Therefore, you should do your best not to let things get to this point.


It is not that common for a hair transplant treatment plan to change. Sometimes, it is unavoidable, while at other times, you may not be able to do anything.

If the changes only require more or fewer hair grafts, you won’t be charged extra for them.

However, if you want an upgrade or additional procedures, you’ll pay for those, although you will be able to avail of a discount.

In case you cannot get a hair transplant, you can switch to another treatment or get a refund for it.

Reviewed and Approved by Trichologist Yaprak Yazan

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