Possible Side Effects

As with all types of surgeries, there will be side effects that may last temporarily until the healing process is over. It is very typical for patients to experience none to some of these side effects. These side effects are only temporary, and will disappear on their own or with simple medications.

Pink Skin on Graft Area
The implanted area will be pink, and the skin slightly shiny. It may last from two weeks to eight weeks then return to normal.

Temporary Thinning of Pre-Existing Hair
After the surgery, it is normal for some pre-existing hair to thin. The pre-existing hair will return to normal in full condition within a few months after the surgery.

Some bleeding is normal and will stop with simple pressure. Persistent bleeding occurs in about one in a few hundred cases. Additional stitching is rarely required.

Pain is usually fairly minimal and lasts only a few days. 50% of our patients do not require any pain relievers, and the others take Tylenol for a few days.

Some transient numbness is inevitable, and usually lasts from three to eighteen weeks. It is rarely bothersome or long-lasting.

Hiccups may occur after surgery. The cause is not well known. The incidence of this complication is about 5%. It usually lasts several hours to several days. If left untreated, the hiccups may interfere when you eat and sleep, but there is a medication that the doctor can prescribe to ease the hiccups.

Some itching commonly occurs but is rarely troublesome and lasts only a few days. Shampooing the hair daily will help the discomfort.

There is some swelling in nearly all cases. It affects the forehead and the area around the eyes and lasts two to five days, being maximal on the fourth day. In about one in fifty cases, a “black eye” develops.

This happens in one in several thousand cases and is easily cured with antibiotics. We will provide you with antibiotics prior to and after the procedure to prevent this from happening.

Keloid scarring occurs only in pre-disposed individuals, and even more rarely (1/1000 cases) has this keloid scarring been hypertrophy to the point of “ridging.”

One or more cysts may occur in the recipient area. They usually disappear by themselves after a few weeks. They are not usually more than 2 or 3 mm in diameter, i.e., the size of small pimples.