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Ways to Reduce Swelling after Hair Transplant

Friday, February 25th, 2011

Swelling in the forehead and transplanted area is a very common side effect for a majority of people who receive hair transplant in the front and top areas of their scalp. The swelling (or skin edema) is due in most part to the inflammatory reaction of healing incisions. Application of anesthetic solutions by intra-operative injection is unrelated to this common side effect. Some patients may not experience swelling for the first day or two after hair transplant, but may start to notice swelling 3 to 4 days after the procedure. In most cases the swelling disappears 4 to5 days following the hair transplant.

Swelling can be minimized by:

  • Diluted steroid solutions infiltrated into recipient area during surgery (this method may be used on a select few).*
  • Keeping your head above chest level can significantly minimize the amount of swelling so sleeping in a semi-upright position for the first few nights is recommended.
  • Wrapping your forehead with an elastic bandage (do so, only under the instruction of the surgeon).
    Systematic anti-inflammatory medications such as steroids can be prescribed for a short period to most hair transplants to minimize swelling post op.

*Dr. G. Abbasi has conducted a recent study on the effect of diluted solution of steroids to minimize the rate of swelling after hair restoration surgery. Results of the steroid injections on swelling after hair transplant can be found in the Journal of Aesthetic Surgery (Hair Transplantation: Preventing Post-operative Oedema). US Hair Restoration offers this option to patients who are prone to swelling.