Dangers of Hair Transplants

When dealing with bald spots on your head, one common option is to get a hair transplant. Hair transplants involve taking hair and scalp from one area of the head with an abundance of hair (such as the sides or back of the head), and transplanting it to an area that is bald or has very thin hair. Because hair transplants involve surgery, there are a number of items to consider to weigh the risks of the procedure.

A doctor points his finger at a man's head where he is getting a hair transplant. (Image: sezer66/iStock/Getty Images)


One danger of a hair transplant is the possibility of areas of numbness after the surgery. This occurs when nerves in either the donor or transplant site are damaged. In some cases the numbness is only temporary, while in others it can be permanent.


Hair transplant surgery can cause scarring. If the transplant is successful, the new hair should cover most scarring. However, if your body rejects the hair transplant, you may develop a noticeable scar in the remaining bald spot. The amount of scarring depends upon the way the procedure is done, the sensitivity of your skin, and the skill of the surgeon performing the transplant.


Although most hair transplant clinics take the necessary steps to prevent an infection, serious infections (such as a staph infection) can sometimes occur. To prevent infection, the doctor may prescribe antibiotics before the surgery takes place, according to Dr. Larry J. Shapiro, D.O.P.A. He may also prescribe anti-inflammatory medications to control any post-surgical swelling.

Allergic Reaction

As with any surgical procedure, hair transplant surgery carries the danger of a serious allergic reaction to the local anesthesia used to perform the procedure. Local anesthesia also can cause other reactions, such as cardiac or central nervous system problems. Although these reactions are rare, the complications of such a reaction could be deadly.


Sometimes, the surgery seems successful, but the body ultimately rejects the implant. Although this does not typically create physical harm, it could leave you out a lot of money without any results to show for it.

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