First of all, a great blog – so thanks and I hope you get lots of patients from it!
I’m a 35 year old male. I had a hair transplant 10 days ago (1400 grafts) and am due to have my stiches out on day 12 (the doctor said that 10 days is ideal – but today’s a Saturday).
I’m a regular gym-goer and would like to know when I can hit the gym to my usual intensity. My doctor said that I should exercise only lightly initially. But I’d like to get back to my usual heavy weights. When would you generally say is safe to lift heavily?
Exercise after hair transplant surgery is a concern for many people who are physically active and want to get back to their normal routine. You are facing two risks after a hair transplant:
- The risk of losing new hair grafts from scratching or rubbing the skin of the recipient area. If the hair and scalp are washed well after surgery, the risk of graft loss after 3-5 days is small, as the risk occurs as long as the scabs are present.
- The incision in the donor area, which is primarily closed by sutures or staples. The body takes 3 weeks on average for the wound to be reasonably secure. The healing of the incision of the donor area follows a general wound healing process that is standard no matter where the wound occurs. The process of healing starts from the moment the wound is closed. The body lays down the supportive infrastruture of fibrin from which the stroma for a secure would builds. Any vigorous activity should be avoided within the first week and then any aerobics can be done as long as the wound is not stressed (no heavy weights at all). After 2 weeks, the strength of this newly healed skin is not anywhere close to its final level, but between weeks 5 and 6 it reaches better than 80% internal strength. You can probably start your regular aerobic activities after the first week (the sutures should hold the wound together), but no weight lifting should be undertaken for 4-6 weeks. The process of wound maturation takes up to six months after the surgery.