The first month after a hair transplant shows some dramatic changes in your hairline. First, there’ll be some swelling, bleeding, and oozing (pillow protectors at the ready). After this, the grafts will start to heal over, creating crusts and scabs across your hairline. The transplanted hairs in your grafts will then start to grow but before you start to see too much success, they’ll fall out. Don’t panic. This is a perfectly normal part of the healing process.
This post-transplant hair shedding (also known as shock hair loss) usually starts after 2-3 weeks in the hair transplant timeline, and lasts for a couple of weeks. After this, you will start to see new hair growth.
So what will your hairline look like 1 month after a hair transplant? In this article, we’ll examine the hairlines of 6 men in the 1-month period after their hair restoration surgery, and explore some of the common side effects you may see around this time.
Number of grafts: 2,500Areas covered: temples, hairline, mid-scalp, crown
This follicular unit extraction (FUE) Wimpole Clinic patient had sparse coverage across his mid scalp before his hair transplant surgery, with near-total frontal balding.
One month after his hair transplant procedure, the shape of his new hairline is still visible, although there’s not much new hair growth from the grafts. This is expected at this stage. Some longer hairs are visible, but these are likely to be existing pre-transplant hairs.
There’s still some redness around the scalp following his male hair loss treatment. In most patients, this clears up within a couple of weeks as the inflammation settles. However, it should be stated that some patients are prone to slower healing.
In these cases, it may take a month or more for the redness to go down completely. If you still see redness after around 2 months, speak to your hair transplant clinic for advice.
Number of grafts: 5,700Area covered: temples, hairline, mid-scalp
Most of this patient’s hair loss was across the temples, but he was also starting to thin around the crown. His hair transplant operation has brought his hairline forward substantially, following the natural curve of his forehead to create an organic-looking hairline. The patient has started to lose his grafts at this point, so the density is very thin. However, this should fill out in the coming months.
Despite this patient’s widespread hair loss, a 5700 graft count is almost the maximum number of grafts that should be taken in a single session . A 5000 graft hair transplant is rarely needed and can put patients at risk of graft overharvesting.
Although this patient appears to have had a good result 1 month after his hair transplant, this could potentially have been achieved with fewer grafts. The patient had his hair transplant in Turkey, where it’s more common for unscrupulous clinics to artificially inflate the graft count so you may pay more than you need to for your transplant. Learn more about getting a hair transplant abroad, and the best countries to get a hair transplant.
Number of grafts: 2,000-2,500Area covered: temples, hairline
This patient’s hairline was receding significantly by the relatively young age of 27. While he knew he was experiencing male pattern baldness before this, he eventually turned to a hair transplant as he was no longer happy with the extent of his hair loss.
The patient reported that his transplant began to look worse approximately 1 month after the hair transplant surgery, due to shock hair loss (the temporary shedding of newly transplanted hair follicles). But because he was prepared for it, he didn’t feel bad about it. That’s why it’s so important to know what to expect during hair transplant recovery.
Like the Wimpole Clinic patient above, this patient also has some lingering redness in the area. The good news is that his new hairline appears neat and natural, with his temple hair loss completely covered.
Number of grafts: 2,500Area covered: hairline
The baseline photo for this patient was taken on the day of his hair transplant. Since his hair is thick and long, he could easily cover up his receding hairline before the transplant. Eventually, his hair may have thinned further, making his hair loss more obvious. Fortunately for him, his hair transplant has preemptively repaired his receding hairline.
A month later, his hair grafts are beginning to fall out. Shock hair loss has impacted all of these patients at this stage, showing just how common it is for your grafts to shed in the weeks following FUE or FUSS transplantation. The individual graft entrances are also visible for this patient 1 month after his hair transplant. Lingering signs of a hair transplant tend to be more visible in people with fairer skin tones.
It’s not just the newly transplanted hair graft area that will look different a month after your hair transplant. Your donor area should also be healing nicely. If you’ve had FUE or unshaven FUE (UFUE) treatment, the tiny wounds should have healed up and the hair across your head will have started to grow to cover the area.
This patient’s hair is still a little shorter in the donor area, but will soon be long enough to disguise the graft removal:
FUT/FUSS recovery tends to take a little longer, but after a month you should still see significant healing and hair regrowth. Here’s the scarring in a FUT patient 1 month after his surgery:
Itchiness is very common in the first few weeks after a hair transplant . Histamines — the chemicals that make you itch — are released as part of the body’s anti-inflammatory response. Hair transplant side effects like this usually disappear in less than a month, but you may experience some lingering itchiness, especially if you’ve had complications or your recovery has been slow.
Itchiness often subsides if you take an antihistamine, or when you wash your hair after your hair transplant. If the itchiness persists for longer than a month, speak to your clinic. They may prescribe a steroid cream to help relieve the itch.
See what your hair transplant will look like at each stage of the hair transplant growth chart:
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