Fortunately, shock loss occurs in a relatively small percentage of patients and is typically more common in those patients who have diffuse thinning into which hairs are placed between the existing hairs, a situation which is much more common in females than in males. The number of factors that increase the risk of shock loss include the following: excess amounts of epinephrine in the anesthetic agent or the patient having an unusual sensitivity to these agents, excess trauma to the surrounding hairs by the use of incision blades that are too large, and over packing of grafts of into an area due to poor planning by the surgeon or an unanticipated sensitivity to the existing hairs due to the trauma induced by the hair transplant procedure. If shock loss does occur, it can be treated with both the application of Rogaine, which increases blood supply to the area, as well as laser light therapy which increases blood flow as well as the activity of the hair follicles. In the majority of cases, most of the hairs regrow after several months.
Posted by Jeffrey S. Epstein, MD, FACS