Body Hair Transplant Surgery
Body Hair Transplant Surgery or “BHT” is an FUE procedure where the grafts (hair follicles) are individually removed by an ultra-fine punch tool from different parts of the patient’s body instead of the back of the scalp. For example, from the chest, back, arms or legs.
Body Hair Transplant Surgery is appealing to any patient that carries a reasonable amount of thick body hairs.
It is a very successful and viable procedure for restoring head hair, but there are a few things the Body Hair Transplant Surgery candidate should understand and consider carefully beforehand…
Benefits of Body Hair Transplant Surgery
- The body acts as another donor area when the usual donor supply at the back of the head is insufficient.
- Most people want to remove the hair on their back, shoulders or chest, so the double benefit of Body Hair Transplant Surgery is that these unwanted hairs can be successfully utilised to thicken the density of hair on the head.
- Due to the characteristic texture of most types of body hair, it provides some good volume for hair on the head (the same reason people “tease” their hair to create more hair volume).
Things to Consider Before Body Hair Transplant Surgery
Before wanting to be assessed for a Body Hair Transplant procedure, you need to be aware of the following facts:
Body hairs do not grow as long as scalp hairs
We all know that body hairs rarely grow longer than 2-3cm and that the hair on the scalp can grow much longer than this. Whilst scalp body hair will grow to a slightly longer length when planted into the scalp, it will not grow to the same length as the natural scalp hair already existing on the head. If you want to grow all your hair long, then BHT may not be your best option.
Body hairs have different characteristics to scalp hair
This basically means that the body hair transplanted to the scalp will not look or behave quite the same as the hair already existing on the scalp. This is due to a variance in hair colour (either darker or lighter), growth behaviour (curly instead of straight) and hair shaft thickness (thicker or finer depending on where the hair is removed from).
The Doctor will always insist on using scalp donor hair over body hair if a sufficient amount is available from the back of the head.
BHT is ideal for camouflaging scars or to thicken thinning areas
If a patient has had multiple surgeries of FUG and FUE which has left their donor region thin and scarred, BHT is perfect to treat this area. The donor area is not being used so further depleted by having this additional BHT procedure to camouflage the scars. This principle of not reducing donor density is ideal, whether they are transplanting into their scar or want to further thicken their scalp hair density.
BHT is not recommended for rebuilding a frontal hairline
Body hairs do not have the same characteristics as scalp hair, so the last place a patient would want these follicles implanted would be to rebuild their frontal hairline shape.
The key to a successful hair transplant sydney result is that it should be undetectable to the general public and that it should have achieved good growth of over 90%. Since body hair often has a different texture, growth rate and colour to scalp hair, it may be easier to detect if placed around the frontal hairline.
This is why Body Hair Transplant Surgery is generally limited to scars or thinning regions that still contain hair.
However, if the scalp donor area is depleted and the patient has already transplanted their frontal hairline in the past, then using body hairs is fine as long as there is no other suitable option and that the patient understands that it will not look exactly the same as scalp hair.
Who is an Ideal Candidate for Body Hair Transplant Surgery?
- You must have an adequate number of strong body hairs on another part of your body such as the lower neck, back, shoulders, chest, arms or legs.
- You must have exhausted your other viable options, eg obtaining follicles from the back of the scalp (you will either have depleted numbers from previous surgery or have naturally insufficient numbers)
- You must have realistic expectations about the results achievable because the natural characteristics of body hair are different to scalp hair.
- It is better if you do not require frontal hairline restoration and that you have some existing hair in the area to be treated with Body Hair Transplant surgery (though this is not strictly essential).