Physician Answered Q & As

Looking For Options To Conceal My Hair Transplant Scar So I Can Shave My Head

I had a hair transplant over 5 years ago and was fully aware that I would need 3 to 4 more hair transplant procedures to cover a bald head. I thought this was the direction I wanted to go. I have very thin hair, and realize I am not the best candidate for the procedure, so I’m not wanting to commit to putting an additional 3 scars on the back of my head. I wish I could just go back to super short hair/shaved close. Is there anything I can do with the scar on the back of my head? ~ Michael

Thank you for your letter. Once you’ve had a strip surgery it is often very difficult to regain the ability to wear your hair shaved close as the scar may have a slightly different shade of skin coloring than the non-scarred skin and the linear scar, even when very thin, can draw the attention of an observer. There are, however, options to wear your hair short.

If your scar is a “normal” width, say 1-3 mm, you may be a candidate for a scar removal followed by a special method of wound closure whereby one of the skin edges is treated a certain way as to allow healing with hair actually growing through the scar. This method of treating the wound and suturing is called a “trichophytic closure.”

A second option would be to have additional grafts placed into the scar to “break up” the appearance of a linear scar. Of course this option requires additional grafts and since you don’t want another linear scar you would have to have these grafts removed from the donor area by a method called follicular unit extraction (FUE). This method will leave very small “dot-like” scars in the donor area that are difficult to see in most circumstances. You will likely require multiple FUE procedures to attain a reasonable density as grafts cannot be planted as close together in a scar as they can in non-scarred skin.

A final option is to consider tattooing the scar. This option entails the deposition of pigment into the scar to make it look more like the surrounding skin. This option can work well with darker hair colors, but again, shaving the head may not be possible.

You can seek out a qualified hair restoration surgeon with experience in scar revisions, trichophytic closures, and FUE to perform an evaluation and discuss your particular situation.

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The International Alliance of Hair Restoration Surgeons is a consumer organization that selectively screens skilled and ethical hair transplant surgeons. The IAHRS does not offer an open membership policy to doctors practicing hair transplatation, and is the only group that recognizes that all surgeons are not equal in their skill and technique. Its elite membership seeks to represent the best in the discipline, the true leaders in the field of surgical hair restoration.