You’re about to head out the door to run a few errands. Before you do, you take a quick look in the mirror. Oh, wait! The image you see seems like a pale shadow of your former self. Something is different. You take a closer look and notice a receding hairline. Yep, hair loss happened. Suddenly, you have a lump in your throat. You feel deflated. What do you do?
Fortunately, hair follicle replacement could restore your hair and self-esteem. See, it’s not all doom and gloom. A UK follicle restoration or hair restoration treatment may be what you need to alleviate your struggle with hair loss. “But what about costs?” you wonder.
Generally, hair restoration or transplant costs roughly between £3150 and £12,000, depending on many factors. Essentially, the hair implantation procedure a specialist uses affects the overall costs. Before we address the contributing elements, let’s discuss how the procedure works.
How Hair Follicle Replacement Works
For starters, a hair restoration procedure occurs in a doctor’s office. The most common treatments are:
- Follicular unit extraction(FUE)
- Follicular unit strip surgery (FUSS)
FUE involves taking groups of hairs (called units) from a selected area of the body and transplanting them into the affected area. It is a minimally invasive procedure that grafts hair follicles without damaging your scalp, which would otherwise lead to scarring. As a result, the scalp maintains its natural look after transplantation. Besides, you can get back to your daily routine in no time, thanks to a short recovery time.
On the other hand, FUSS involves the removal of a strip of skin (usually 6”-10” long) from a selected area- mainly the back of the head. The surgeon then closes the scalp and hides the surgical spot using surrounding hair. After that, the surgeon subdivides the removed strip of skin into tiny grafts- up to 2000 units, each containing a hair follicle or two. If the surgeon has to graft multiple follicles to a large area, expect your care bill to reflect the same (we’ll discuss costs per graft in a bit).
Once these steps are out of the way, both procedures are similar. Essentially, the transplant surgeon cleans and numbs the transplantation site, creates holes, and meticulously slots each graft into the holes. The laborious process can take anywhere from 3 to 8 hours, depending on the size of the area they need to cover.
Given the invasive nature of FUSS, many patients don’t prefer the method as it results in a higher level of post-operative discomfort, leads to scarring, and requires a lengthy recovery period. But, it’s best to consult your hair transplant specialist to:
- Examine your scalp and check the donor site for the amount of donor’s hair.
- Perform relevant tests.
- Evaluate the condition of your hair density, color, texture, and quality.
In so doing, they can best recommend the ideal technique to use. And now that you’re in the know let’s consider the elements that impact the cost of hair restoration.
Hair Transplantation Type
As you have noted, hair transplant procedures vary and inevitably affect the overall costs. Thus, the type of procedure you choose affects the cost. Still, how much hair will the surgeon need to graft? If they have to move more hair to cover a large area on your scalp, expect the costs to be higher than if they only had to tackle a small section.
For instance, the treatment procedure for a receding hairline requires between 1,500 and 1,800 grafts. Surgeons charge roughly £4 per graft, meaning if you need 1,800 grafts, you will part with about £7,200.
Along the same lines, treatment for male pattern baldness- an issue that affects millions of people- requires up to 2,500 grafts. In short, it goes without saying that the more grafts a surgeon has to perform, the higher the fees. A surgeon may use a graduated scale to charge for hair grafts. For instance, they can charge £5 for each graft up to 2000 and lower the rate to £4 for each additional graft.
If you intend to have the procedure done in an area with a high cost of living (an expensive city, for instance), expect surgical costs to increase. Clinics in such areas have to keep their lights on, and they partly do so by setting higher prices for their services to cater to their overheads.
Still, competition has a part to play. In short, demand and supply affect pricing. Thus, if a surgical practice is in a location with few transplant surgeons, costs are likely to be higher than in an area with many clinics offering similar services.
And oh, sometimes, you may have to go to great lengths to find an ideal or suitably qualified surgeon. As a result, you would need to factor your travel costs into the equation.
Level of Baldness
How pronounced is your hair loss? Typically, severe cases of thinning hair call for a higher number of grafts. Inevitably, this affects the overall procedure’s cost- as we’ve noted. After evaluating your condition, your hair transplant specialist provides a rough estimate of the number of grafts you may need. But, the idea isn’t to saddle you with high charges- the surgeon usually has the aim of the procedure in mind.
In case of minimal hair loss, a surgeon may need at least 500 grafts to cover the affected spot. But, to achieve the desired results on a large area, a specialist may have to graft between 2,500 and 3,500 follicles.
Availability of Donor Graft
If the number of hair follicles on the donor site is insufficient, your surgeon has to evaluate alternatives- other areas such as your chest. Unfortunately, extracting hair from your chest or beard can be difficult, if not time-consuming. Consequently, replacement costs would rise.
Hair follicle replacement requires a high degree of technical proficiency to produce great results. With that in mind, we can safely assume that a surgeon with the necessary skill and knowledge would command higher fees than their less-experienced counterparts. Besides, experience implies that a surgeon is comfortable managing complex hair-loss issues and has a track record of achieving better results. As a result, if you settle for such a professional, expect higher costs.
All things considered, the cost of a hair replacement procedure can vary significantly due to various elements, as we’ve discussed. If you’re exploring options in Manchester or surrounding locations, your best bet would be a surgeon who’s well versed in the treatment. And provided you get the results you’re after; the benefits would far outweigh the costs. Then, you wouldn’t shudder at the thought of looking in the mirror, right?