Hair transplantation is the most adept way of correcting hair loss. It is the singular permanent and real (as in real, human hair) solution to an embarrassing condition ailing millions of men and women. Today’s sophisticated microsurgical technology has enabled surgeons to do what was once considered impossible: restoring hairlines, adding density to thinning crowns, correcting an accident, disease, or other trauma that has caused baldness. Even the severely bald have hope of hair restoration. Most remarkable about this technology is that it enables an artistic finesse that was lacking in hair transplantation 10-20 short years ago.
The cost of a hair restoration surgery depends on certain variables.
FIGURING THE COST OF HAIR LOSS SURGERY
Factors determining the coast include:
- Technique employed
- Skill level of the surgeon
- Needs and/or goals of the patient
- Long-term patient satisfaction
These factors tend to be reliable when figuring out what a hair transplant costs.
Hair transplantation is a world and a culture unto itself. There are blogs, discussion forums, journals, Internet communities, Facebook pages, etc devoted to the enduring, mind-bending, potentially life-altering question: what technique should I trust? Aside from the fact that different techniques yield varying results across a spectrum ranging from sub-par to superb, different techniques also bear varying costs. A more sophisticated technique will be reflected in the final cost.
It therefore stands to reason that a more advanced technique will provide a better outcome. This is also generally the case, however, desired outcome is never guaranteed with any technique and expectations should always be harnessed to reality. Outcome is additionally impacted by the health of a patient, potential complications, and the choice of surgeon (discussed later).
So if results are no guarantee, why are more sophisticated hair transplant procedures more expensive? For one, an advanced technology does greatly increase the chance of a desired outcome. Secondly, the more advanced, microsurgical techniques are less invasive, proffer a quicker healing time, and show far less scarring long-term. Thirdly, these techniques also allow for more artistry in creating the “look” one wants, i.e. building a gradual hairline. But the real reason one technique costs more than another is due to the work and training invested on the part of the surgeon. For example, follicular unit transplantation (FUT), popularly known as strip surgery, is a lower-cost surgery than follicular unit extraction (FUE). And here’s why:
***Body hair transplant cost is usually the same as the cost of scalp hair harvest at FUE clinics.
Skill Level of The Surgeon
The cost of the procedure depends on the doctor. Some surgeons are renowned for their caliber of work. It is these surgeons whose artistry and grace of hand take FUE and other such techniques to a higher level. Many of these elite travel the world to employ their skills, servicing those who require the best of technology and aptitude. Hair transplant cost is here determined by supply and demand, so to speak. To pay for the time of such an experienced and widely respected practitioner again raises the likelihood of a desired outcome and minimized scarring.
Dr. Umar is a world-leading practitioner of FUE and pioneer of body hair transplantation. He has paved the way in regard to servicing those who suffer with severe hair loss and have a depleted head donor source. He incorporates the use of head or non-head hair with his personal vision and philosophy of hair transplant as an art form.
As a practitioner of exclusively FUE-based techniques, his hair transplant cost is considered reasonable on the broad spectrum.
Patient Needs and/or Goals
Simply put, greater need and/or higher goals mean more cost. Whether a surgeon prices his or her services per hour or per graft, the balder patient will need a lot of both. And the more hair needed (or wanted) equals more grafts to be extracted, which equals more hours spent in surgery, which equals a stiffer price.
Long-Term Patient Satisfaction
This incorporates all of the above, in addition to one more factor that may increase hair transplant cost—some patients require more surgeries to meet their ultimate goal. A hair transplant patient must reconcile to the possibility of more surgeries in the future and plan financially ahead of time. Of course, going back for a second or third surgery, which is not uncommon for severe baldness or repair cases, means that the patient will pay more in the long term.
HOW DOES A CLINIC CHARGE?
Different clinics establish their price using various structures. Here are a few examples:
- For each graft. DermHair Clinic prices at $8/graft. Multiplied by the number of grafts you require, total cost is simple to calculate.
- On a sliding scale. (Example:)
This is when clinics offer fee discounts according to number of grafts done. It is often practiced by clinics performing the strip type of hair transplantation.
*This is not the pricing structure for Dr Umar and DermHair Clinic.
- Per session. For example, a clinic with a flat fee of $5,000 for a 600-graft session would charge three sessions for a patient needing 1800 grafts.
HOW TO FINANCE YOUR SURGERY
Being able to afford the expense of surgery is an important preliminary step on the way to hair transplantation. Imagine saving for a down payment on a house or for a wedding. Paying for a hair surgery won’t cost as much as these things (hopefully!) but should be taken just as seriously. Do some research, delve into your current debt and finances and figure out which of the following methods will work best for you:
- Personal savings
- Personal bank loans
- Credit cards.
- Companies that finance medical care, such as Credit Care online
MEDICAL TOURISM TO CUT COST
Underdeveloped countries do not have as much oversight and quality control as most developed countries, such as the United States. Institutions in 2nd or 3rd world places ensuring good standards are either corrupt or non-existent in almost all cases.
In addition to receiving sub-standard care up front, undergoing surgery in another country and then traveling home denotes the lack of good follow-up care or proper recourse in the event of complications. Dr. Umar has frequently received frantic calls and requests to intervene in post-surgical situations for surgeries performed in other countries. It is frustrating and disheartening for him to see the low quality care dispensed, and attending to such patients who clearly have been taken advantage of.
Additionally, when such cases arise, the legal and law enforcement agencies in most of these countries are often corrupt or incompetent. Thus, in the event of egregious harm, the patient (a foreigner) wold have little or no recourse.
WORDS OF ADVICE WHEN CHOOSING A HAIR RESTORATION PROCEDURE
With all this said, it is important to bear in mind that, if you are after hair transplant, cost should NOT be the last say in the type of treatment you receive. This includes:
- Your choice of technique and especially your choice of surgeon and clinic.
- Sacrificing quality of care and outcome by having your surgery performed in underdeveloped countries to cut cost.
- Distance to your clinic of choice. The last purchase you may want to make in light of everything else is a plane ticket. But distance should not be a limiting factor after deciding on the best surgeon for you. It is not unheard of for patients to travel to another country in order to get the best treatment.
The cost of a hair restoration procedure may be steep, but a hair transplant is forever. Many people would spend more time and money purchasing a car than they would on a surgery that will permanently alter their appearance, confidence level, and quality of life. Don’t be one of those people.
DERMHAIR CLINIC PATIENTS
Dr. Umar has altered many lives through his Los Angeles-based practice. His advanced skill and exclusive use of FUE has made what hair transplant costs today well worth it for these patients who suffered from various levels of pattern baldness.
The following DermHair Clinic patients had prior surgeries that bore subpar results, often yielding little to no new growth and leaving them severely scarred, even disfigured. In each case, the patient first compromised because of cost, opting for a cheaper surgery. But in the end, undergoing hair transplant cost them more financially and emotionally, having paid for the initial surgery, a repair surgery, and having dealt with whatever disfigurement during the interim.
If you want to learn more about hair restoration procedures and how they are performed, click here to read more.