I wish I had done more research prior to letting a surgeon talk me into a hair transplant. I am 21 years old, and very depressed about my thinning hair. I answered an ad and when I visited the medical office they said that they had a cure for balding. What was probably a salesman working for a doctor and he seemed to know all of the answers and he told me that If I had hair transplants, it would be like an insurance policy to keep hair where it was balding. He told me that they were running a special promotion and I could buy the transplants for $2000 less than they are normally priced if I signed up that day. That was almost a year ago when I received 2689 grafts and now I am more bald then when I started. A few of my friends who were also balding, decided to shave their heads (one actually clipped it close like a military hair cut) and they looked surprisingly good. I realized that if I shaved my head or even cut it short, I would still have this scar on the back. Can I go back and be bald again? Can the scar be reverse?
Part of the problem with doing hair transplants in a 20 year old is that they make more of an emotional decision than a logical one. For you the right treatment would have been Propecia (assuming the diagnosis of genetic balding is correct) and to wait at least a year to see if the balding (thinning hair) would reverse. There are many reasons that someone of your age should be treated with medications (like Propecia or minoxidil) including:
- Seeing how bad your hair loss will become. The pattern of hair loss for a man is usually not exposed until after the age of 26.
- See if the medications alone will solve your problem by reversing it or stopping it.
- Living with the problem and continued research by you in this area may give you more insight into your problem.
- Time to build an adequate war chest of money, which is often a problem for someone of your age either in college or just into the workforce.
These problems are blown up for you because you are a young man who is acting on hair loss that may or may not be in your future.
Although most of the clinics use some professional salesmen (people who know how to sell, because that is what they do for a living and have a financial incentive to sell you, although illegal in many states), some doctors are no better than the salesmen when their objective is to get you talked into a transplant. A good doctor would have your interests over his own financial interest because that is the oath he took when he became a doctor. With that said, some rotten apples got into the barrel of good apples and became con-men for people like you. I would have no hesitation saying that if you were pressured into having a hair transplant and had not been started on Propecia, this is malpractice and possibly a felony on consumer protection issues and medical board ethics. You should report that doctor to the medical board.
With regard to your desire to reverse it, that would be highly improbable with today’s technology. Laser hair removal will remove the pigment of the skin where each graft is individually hit with a laser to kill the hair one at a time. Even follicular unit extraction (FUE) will not address the recipient area. With regard to your donor scar, it might be made skinnier but still not skinny enough for shaving your head. I always tell patients that the good and bad news about a hair transplant is that it is permanent. I would be happy to see you for a second opinion.