Men often feel self-conscious as they start losing their hair. It is no coincidence that male pattern baldness (something that the individual has no control over) often occurs at the same time as a decline in self-confidence and mental health problems. There are solutions available, yet all of them seem to carry just as much stigma as going bald.

Wearing a hairpiece is one solution, but despite the great effort and cost involved in making it look natural, the results can often be quite conspicuous. This is not helped by the sudden change in appearance that a hairpiece provides.

Other solutions

Technology has provided another solution in the form of hair transplant surgery. The level of stigma around this procedure has decreased due to the number of high profile figures publicly announcing they have undergone the procedure. However, the myths that the treatment is painful and the results are unnatural has led several men to shy away from the procedure altogether.

 A lot of these myths are leftover from the early days of hair transplantation, which involved transplanting hair plugs of several hundred follicles – this led to criticisms that the scalp of the recipient would look like a badly tended lawn. Advances in technology have made results like those a thing of the past with the development of these techniques:

FUT (follicular unit transplantation)

This technique involves removing a strip of skin, then removing small groups of between one and three follicles from that strip for transplantation into the affected areas. Clearly, the removal of a strip of skin, even from a less obvious area is not the ideal solution, so this technique is not used very often after the development of the FUE procedure.

FUE (follicular unit extraction)

This process is similar to FUT in that the follicles are removed in smaller numbers, but it is completed without removing a strip of skin. This process instead removes them from the side head or back of the neck to be transplanted into the affected areas.

Even with these advances, the myths persist that this procedure is painful when it is only minimally invasive. It is also carried out under local anesthetic, so the reality is that the patient will feel either very little or nothing at all.

Specialized treatment

There is a specialized treatment in which the patient’s hair growth is mapped before the procedure so that each follicle is placed in the correct area at the correct angle to give a natural appearance. The cost of the procedure will depend on the number of follicles that need to be transplanted, however visiting will show you a more detailed breakdown of the costs involved.

Another myth that needs to be busted is that the use of the word transplant implies that the recipient will be receiving somebody else’s hair. As outlined in the description of the techniques involved the hair is removed from areas unaffected by pattern baldness and does not come from a ‘donor’

With these techniques in place, it is easy to see how the procedures have advanced in the last 30 years and that male pattern baldness does not need to be the issue it was once perceived as being.