Hair transplant surgery is done to cover up a bald area. Patients prefer various hairstyles and it is important that a patient be counselled regarding the expected pattern of hair growth and how to look younger and beautiful because those are the two primary objectives of this surgery.
Keeping long hair
Hair transplant surgery is a surgery of illusion. In the most common FUT technique, a strip of hair bearing skin is taken from the back of the scalp and the individual follicles dissected out and implanted into a bald area which is quite large in most cases. Therefore, it is clearly apparent that the density which is present in a normal scalp can never be recreated by a hair transplant because one does not have enough follicles to do the same.
Therefore, to create the illusion of a head full of hair, it is important that the hair volume is more because more volume would add to the density and give better cover. Therefore, it is best if patients keep long hair after surgery as this creates the illusion better. Also, keeping long hair helps in concealing scars that might be present at the back of the scalp resulting from donor harvest. In this regard, it is important to mention that FUT produces a linear scar but FUE is not scar less in that it produces multiple dotted scars over the donor areas.
Keeping short hair
Many patients prefer keeping short hair. They should be explained that hair transplant surgery works best in patients who keep their hair long. However, if they persist in keeping their hair short then the hair line should be densely packed and the midsection should be relatively less dense as well as the vertex. In these patients, scalp micropigmentation is a very good option and can successfully provide the illusion of increased density.
Hair transplant patients should be counselled to make them keep long hair as this gives the best results after surgery. SMP can be added to patients who insist in keeping their hair short after surgery but they should be counselled that scars over the back of the head might be visible as a result.