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Ordinarily, once Androgenetic Alopecia is diagnosed and hair transplant surgery recommended, no further tests are required in the vast majority of cases.
For potential female patients where the cause of hair loss is unknown, we recommend an appointment with a consultant dermatologist.
In keeping with HRBR’s commitment to excellence and efforts to exceed standards of best practice, we include a pre-operative assessment complete with electrocardiograph (ECG) for all surgery patients as a matter of course.
This 45-minute review checks every patient’s general health by taking a detailed medical history along with weight, blood pressure and oxygen saturation readings, and confirming the presence of any allergies. The donor area is closely examined using macrophotography and a hair count is taken.
A hair density count is also recorded and groupings of 1-, 2-, 3- and 4-hairs are assessed – this is vital information required to accurately plan the distribution of hair follicles. There is also time spent on an initial design to see where the patient might like the hairline to be.
any questions or concerns are discussed at this time with the qualified and experienced hair transplant nurses who carry out this routine assessment.
Including this stage prior to the hair transplantation is not only in the interest of patient safety but it allows us to cater for a patient’s physical and emotional needs.
It also encourages a more relaxed encounter, more time to ask questions and think about the information being imparted.
On the morning of the procedure, HRBR’s medical and technical team meets in the lecture room for a comprehensive case conference, where the medical details of the patient in question are discussed.
A personalised day-plan, taking into account the individual’s medical condition and specific requirements for the hair transplant, is then devised by the whole team.
The patient is brought to the clinical photography room where the seven members of the design team design the hairline using laser technology. On reaching a unanimous decision, this hairline design is presented to the patient for approval, making the whole procedure very much a “team effort”.
Today, hair transplant surgeries routinely take between eight and ten hours. This longer theatre time could pose a potential risk to a patient’s heart due to the possibility of prolonged exposure to adrenaline.
In response to this risk, albeit slight, we at HRBR decided to add an ECG to the pre-operative assessment which is conducted before the actual procedure.
We not only follow but exceed the highest standards set out in the clinical guideline document published by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) in the UK, namely “Pre-Operative Tests: The use of routine pre-operative tests for elective surgery.”
While NICE recommends that, for planned minor surgical procedures, a resting ECG is carried out on those over 65, we provide pre-operative testing for all our patients.
Over a twelve-month period, 176 HRBR patients had pre-operative assessments from which 27 ECGs were sent to the cardiologist for testing, with seven of these, all under the age of 65.
The electrocardiograph is performed using a Mac 1200 ST 12-lead ECG machine with automatic interpretation. Any abnormal ECGs are sent to a cardiologist who prepares a written report/interpretation and who will recommend and carry out any necessary further investigations.
The gap between the pre-operative assessment and the procedure date offers enough time for any further cardiac evaluation without interfering with the scheduled surgery.
Once they are in good general health, the majority of men who may have significant thinning or baldness are ideal candidates for hair transplantation.
The first step in determining your suitability is to arrange a private consultation with one of our qualified hair restoration doctors.
During this initial assessment, your hair loss will be investigated in order to reflect on the best possible solution for your hair loss problem.
Although not as common as in men, women suffer from hair loss too for a range of reasons resulting from genetic determination, various medical conditions, surgery, injury, or even from wearing tight hairstyles.
roughly one in ten of our patients are women and depending on the type of hair loss, they may or may not be suitable candidates for hair transplant surgery.
We request all women interested in attending HRBR to attend a dermatologist first in order to attain a diagnosis as to the cause of their hair loss.
Deciding on the “best time” to undergo hair transplant surgery is when you deem your degree of hair loss to be unacceptable. A hair transplant is not something to desire because you are worried about future hair loss or “so no one will notice.”
As the hair loss pattern is usually not discernible for those under the age of 25, young men may not necessarily be suitable candidates.
Therefore, they are frequently, in the first instance, recommended a course of medical treatment for hair loss to which they usually respond very well.
The amount of hair needed for transplantation is estimated according to the present balding pattern, the likely future pattern and the volume of donor hair.
The follicular units in a candidate with high donor density usually contain multiple hairs, while those in someone with low donor density often contain only one hair.
A larger donor strip can be removed in an individual with a very loose scalp, whilst a long narrower donor strip will be extracted in an individual with a tight scalp.
The number of grafts which may be required for hair transplantation will be estimated during a consultation with one of our hair restoration surgeons.