Hair transplant surgery

Updated February 28, 2014
Hair Transplant Surgery
Bottom Line

Hair transplant surgery is the most effective treatment for pattern baldness, hair loss caused by genetics, but it's expensive. It's most effective for those whose balding pattern forms a wreath-like shape; it is not recommended for most women because their balding pattern often doesn't form the wreath shape. Experts say that if done properly, the results look very natural, but choosing the right surgeon is critical. Some people may require multiple surgeries, adding to the cost, in order to achieve the desired results. Every expert we found recommends first trying Rogaine or Propecia before considering surgery.


Not all balding patterns are suitable for surgery. Today's hair transplant technology allows surgeons to transplant smaller hair grafts of just one to four hairs for a more natural look: The procedure involves removing tiny plugs from the back or sides of the scalp and replanting them in the balding areas.

This technique is only appropriate for men with male pattern baldness that creates a wreath of hair around the back and sides of the head. Men who lose hair over diffuse sections aren't suitable for hair transplants. For this same reason, the vast majority of women aren't candidates for the procedure.

Hair transplant surgery is permanent, but the American Hair Loss Association reports that the number of sessions required varies based on the extent of hair loss and projected rate of hair loss.

  • Permanent results
  • Natural-looking
  • Most effective treatment method
  • May require more than one session
  • Not appropriate for all cases of hair loss