Hair loss can have a devastating effect on a person's appearance self-confidence and even their bank balance.
Research carried out shows that patients with a full head of hair tend to be more successful not only with the opposite sex with also with their careers - enjoying higher average levels of income and better promotion prospects.
Hair loss can start in men from as early as their late teens - around 20% of men have experienced some kind of hair loss by the time they are 25.
By the time, they reach 35 around 40% of men are going bald. By 50, 60% of men are losing their hair.
Hair transplantation - either by FUE (follicular unit extraction) or FUT (follicular unit transplantation) is the ONLY long-term solution to baldness.
Some surgeons, such as Crown Clinic's Asim Shahmalak, recommend combining a hair transplant with non-surgical medication such as Finasteride in a two-pronged approach to the problem.
Before you go ahead with a hair transplant there are six things you need to know:
1. That you are the right candidate for a transplant
At Crown Clinic we tend not to treat patients under the age of 25. We wait until that age because, before that, it impossible to fully determine the pattern of a patients baldness. After 25, the pattern is a lot clearer and we can provide a detailed programme on how best to combat their hair loss. It is worth remembering that hair loss is a continual process and a hair transplant will not stop the future loss of more natural hair.
2. You may require more than one procedure
Most patients find that their baldness is sorted with one hair transplant but sadly that is not the case with all patients, particularly those with severe male pattern baldness. Crown Clinic client Calum Best has had three FUE transplants.
Calum needed regular treatment because he started losing his hair at a young age - his early 20s. Also he declined to take any hair loss medication - so we were not able to halt or slow down the loss of his natural hair.
Crown Clinic patient Christian Jessen has had two FUT transplants with our surgeon Asim Shahmalak. Christian also declined to take Finasteride which hastened his natural hair loss.
3. Transplanted hair can be treated like normal hair
This is absolutely the case once the hair transplanted hair has fully grown back. What happens immediately after an operation is the transplanted hair tends to fall out. This is entirely natural and nothing to worry about.
The important thing is the roots of the new hair are established in the balding area. Over time the transplanted hair will grow back but patients should not expect to see the full benefits of a transplant until eight months to a year after the original operation.
For the first few days after the procedure, the transplanted area of the scalp should be treated with extreme care. At Crown Clinic, we recommend that patients sleep upright because they can dislodge the new grafts when they roll around in bed. Similarly, they should wear button-down shirts and not sweater or T-shirts which are pulled over the head - again this action can dislodge the grafts.
Once the new hair is firmly established, it can be treated exactly like normal. Brushing is exactly the same.
4. Transplanted hair is permanent
Transplanted hair should last the patient for the rest of their lives. However, no such guarantee can be made about the natural hair around the transplanted hair. If the patient is young or declines to take Finasteride, they are in danger of losing more of their natural hair - but not the transplanted grafts.
5. Hair loss does tend to slow down or stop as a person ages
No two patients lose their hair at the same rate. In some patients, hair loss can be rapid - look at how Prince William lost his hair rapidly throughout his 20s. However, that is not to say that this hair loss will continue at the same rate. Hair loss tends to slow down or halt in men in their 50s or 60s.
6. If you are going bald, chances are your family is to blame
Most hair loss is hereditary. It can be passed down through the mother or father's genes. The royal family is an obvious example: it has been consistently passed down through the generation - from Prince Philip to Prince Charles and now on to Prince William. The chances are that young Prince George will have the same issues when he grows up.