Hair Transplant is an important once-in-a-lifetime decision that helps you regain your lost self-image and confidence. People who suffer from hair loss and baldness gradually start feeling stressed, anxious, and low self-esteem in social situations. This happens because your hair is a crown and a significant natural feature that impacts your overall personality and looks.
To combat such hair issues, people are now more inclined to go for modern Hair Transplant surgeries instead of investing in slow-performing traditional treatments. If the Hair Loss is due to genetics (androgenetic alopecia), the last resort is only a Hair Transplant. As it gives guaranteed permanent results if done with Hair Transplant Certified Surgeons.
But only SOMETIMES does it come with a 100% success rate. And, if not done by reputed certified surgeons, these may lead to various Hair Transplant Infections.
In this article, we will talk about Hair Transplant Infections, their causes, and the factors contributing to them. But before we dive deep into it, let us briefly understand the Hair Transplant process.
About Hair Transplant
Hair Transplant is a surgical process where hair grafts are taken out from the donor area(usually the back of the scalp) and implanted to the recipient area(area with no hair). This is done widely with two standard methods- FUE and FUT. Have a look at the image below, where hair transplant is done with the FUE method.
Hair Transplant Infections
As per the ISHRS data, there were around 703,183 people who underwent Hair Transplant Surgery in 2022. However, these surgeries do not always go 100% successful.
It is a complex process with some initial effects for a few days (3-4). These are temporary and inevitable effects as the scalp adapts to the new environment.
But if it continues more than usual, then these may be the signs of Hair Transplant Infections. Below are symptoms of potential infections you might get affected after a Hair Transplant Surgery.
- pus-filled abscess or oozing pus
- Swelling and pain
- Redness or discoloration
- Itchiness and bleeding
- Burning and warmth
Some of these symptoms are expected side effects of the surgery. In contrast, others are caused by microbes entering the susceptible donor or recipient area, leading to symptoms like fever, nausea, vomiting, headaches, and lethargy. If not treated timely, these infections may lead to further complications, which are
Folliculitis after hair transplant stems from a bacterial infection and unveils itself through the appearance of red bumps around hair follicles. Surprisingly, folliculitis isn’t exclusive to those with recent transplants—it’s a common scalp concern for various individuals. Moreover, the intriguing twist lies in the possibility of sterile folliculitis, where inflammation occurs without an infection.
Scalp Necrosis After Hair Transplant
Necrosis after hair transplant manifests as a distinctive blackened and leathery appearance in affected scalp tissue. Severe infections elevate the risk of ischemia, restricting blood flow to the scalp, which leads to the irreversible damage of scalp tissue. Seeking prompt assistance from your surgical team is crucial to navigating its potential complications.
Cysts on Scalp
The occurrence of a cyst on the scalp following a hair transplant is a rare but noteworthy phenomenon. Cysts can develop as a result of various factors, including trauma to the hair follicles during the transplant process. These fluid-filled sacs may appear as small, painless bumps on the scalp. They might persist and require medical attention.
If you notice any unusual bumps or experience discomfort, promptly consult with your hair transplant surgeon.
Sepsis After Hair Transplant
The occurrence of sepsis after a hair transplant is extremely rare. It is a severe and potentially life-threatening condition that arises from the body’s overwhelming response to infections. It can progress rapidly and affect multiple organs, leading to symptoms such as fever, rapid heart rate, rapid breathing, low blood pressure, confusion, and organ failure.
In the context of a hair transplant, sepsis could develop if bacteria from the surgical site enter the bloodstream. To mitigate this risk, maintaining strict adherence to postoperative care instructions is paramount.
Causes of Hair Transplant Infections
Inadequate Hygiene and Poor Sanitary Standards
During a Hair Transplant Surgery, tiny slits(holes) are created at the recipient area to implant the Hair Grafts. Similarly, holes with a punch are created on the donor site at the edges of the hair follicle. These holes are very prone to microbial attack.
The most CRUCIAL cause of infection after a hair transplant is the use of unsterilized instruments and improper autoclaves.
So, your hair transplant practitioner must use well-sanitized tools during the process because these holes are nothing but subtle wounds that take time to heal. Also, if unauthorized persons do a hair transplant, they may do it in an unsterilized condition.
Underlying Medical Conditions
Medical conditions can make your wounds more receptive to infections. The recovery of these wounds depends on your immune system, which could be weakened by your existing unhealthiness. These may include
- Autoimmune Disorders
- Excessive Fat
- Chronic infections
- Low metabolism rate/BMR
- High Blood Pressure
Crusts develop as a natural part of the healing process. They consist of dried blood, serum, and other fluids from the surgical site, forming a protective layer over the grafts. However, this crust can create a breeding ground for bacteria if not appropriately managed.
Thick crusts can impede the normal healing process by restricting the flow of oxygen and nutrients to the transplanted hair follicles, potentially leading to hair transplant infections.
Moisture provides an ideal breeding ground for bacteria. The warm and damp conditions created by a consistently moist environment can promote the proliferation of bacteria on the scalp and lead to various hair transplant infections. Excessive moisture can hinder the flow of oxygen to the transplanted hair follicles, which is crucial for the healing process.
Advisable and Forbidden steps to prevent Hair Transplant Infections
- Always choose certified authentic surgeons based on their previous experience in handling complex surgeries. Know about their accomplishments and recognition among international hair transplant societies.
- Investigation and checkup before a Hair Transplant is crucial to prevent any hair transplant-related complication and infection.
- The Hair Transplant centre/clinic must have adequate equipment to address complications. Their Sterilization of the operation theatre and autoclaving of instruments should be proper.
- Follow the post-operative instructions carefully which include medication, sanitary, sleeping postures, diet, environment exposure, and more.
- If you are suffering from any disease, such as diabetes or any other illness, be careful and do regular follow-up visits.
- As per the hair transplant surgeon’s advice, a preoperative shampoo with betadine scrub and post-operative cleaning is a must.
- Refrain from picking at or scratching the scabs and your wounds.
- Avoid swimming and strenuous exercise.
- About using unhygienic and tight caps that lead to sweating.
- Refrain from excessive exposure to UV rays.
- Avoid the consumption of tobacco, alcohol, and smoking while recovering.
- Avoid Harsh cleaning of the scalp.
Inferences: Infection in Hair Transplant Surgery is rare; it is less than 1% in a trained and professional doctor’s clinic but may be up to 50% in an unprofessional and unauthorized person’s place. If the surgery is not planned and performed correctly, this may lead to botched hair transplant infections.
It is always best to choose the Hair Transplant Center wisely for your new hair journey. Rejuvenate Hair Transplant Center in Indore offers :
- Surgery done by Surgeons themselves(Globally Certified)
- Expert Authorized Staff
- Guaranteed Natural Results
- Cutting Edge Technologies
- Affordable price without compromising the quality
Expert surgeons are essential for practising the fine art of Hair Transplant, ensuring meticulous precision in every graft placement.
This attention to detail ensures that the result is not just a fuller head of hair but a masterpiece of naturalness.
So, make sure to choose the best surgeons to minimize the infections!