Before and after body hair transplants from back
A body hair transplant, or BHT, is a safe and effective solution for addressing hair loss almost anywhere in the body. The procedure consists of grafting (harvesting) hair from regions like the beard, chest, back, or legs and transplanting them into specific areas to achieve more coverage and fuller hair densities. BHT also more commonly refers to using body hairs- most commonly from the beard, but also possible in some cases from the chest and or back- to restore density to the scalp. Once transplanted, these hairs will continue to grow similar to scalp hairs.
The BHT hair transplant is an excellent usually adjuvant procedure to the traditional hair transplant surgery, where grafts are taken from the back of the head and transplanted onto another part of the body (typically, but not limited to the scalp). Unfortunately, a common issue with the traditional technique is that not all people have enough viable back-of-the-head hair to perform a successful transplant.
When performed by a skilled surgeon, like Dr. Epstein and his team at the Foundation for Hair Restoration, a body hair transplant can help you regain your self-confidence by creating a youthful, natural appearance you feel proud of, be it a hairier chest, a fuller beard, thicker pubic hair, or a denser scalp.
Bringing New Life to Body Hair
Whereas most hair transplant procedures utilize donor hairs from the scalp, a growing number of patients are relying on body hair transplants to obtain additional grafts beyond what the scalp can provide. These hairs typically come from the beard, but the chest hair transplant is also becoming quite common, as is using the abdomen (belly area), back, arms, leg hair, and even pubic regions as donor sites. One particular advantage of the beard donor areas is that the area heals up within 2 days.
Despite its non-invasive nature and impressive results, most hair restoration practitioners don’t offer BHTs because of the high degree of difficulty and the level of expertise needed to achieve natural and great-looking results.
Dr. Epstein and his team are proud to be one of the few clinics in the world that regularly perform body hair transplants using the latest FUE (follicular unit extraction) technology, having performed hundreds of these procedures that yield outstanding results and minimal scarring.
Dr. Epstein on Body Hair Transplants
Transplanting over 3000 hairs from the back of a male patient, Dr. Epstein was able to achieve at just 8 months an impressive increase in density and aesthetics of this patient’s scalp.
Where in the Body Can Hair Be Transplanted From?
One of the benefits of body to scalp hair transplants is that donor hair can be harvested from almost anywhere in the body, even from places where people typically want to remove hair from. Dr. Epstein performs each body to head hair transplant by manually collecting hair follicle groups, a ground-breaking technique called follicular unit extraction, or FUE, from areas like the beard, chest, abdomen, and beyond.
The FUE technique requires superior precision and unparalleled artistry to ensure the least possible scarring and that the grafts are kept healthy during extraction and transplantation. An alternate method, commonly referred to as strip surgery or FUT, consists of removing entire sections of the scalp that can leave a fine line visible linear scar.
In general, the beard is the preferred source for grafting body hairs due to the greater reliability of regrowth and the quick and excellent healing. Beard hairs also have the advantage of being thicker, therefore providing more coverage with fewer units. The second best option is the chest hair transplant. However, when beard or chest hairs are unavailable, other areas of the body can also serve as donor sites, such as:
- Old donor sites where you already have a scar
- Pubic area
* All patients are unique and individual results may vary.
Where Can Body Hair be Transplanted To?
Body hair transplantation is designed to restore hair most commonly to the scalp by using body hairs, but also can be used to restore hair to the chest and abdomen area as well as the pubic area, armpits, arms, and any other area hair is desired, to both thicken the existing hair or to provide hair growth where there is none. Body hair can also be used to conceal old donor site scars.
The absence of hair could be due to genetics, prior electrolysis, laser hair removal, surgical scars, burns, or other types of accidents. Some patients only seek a thin amount of coverage or to fill in a limited area (i.e., central chest or pubic triangle), while others desire a thick chest and central abdomen area. For some of these cases where maximum density is desired, a second procedure may be necessary.
Am I a Candidate for Body Hair Transplantation?
Good candidates for body hair transplants are adults (18 years and older, but ideally between ages 25 and 65) with severe baldness or hair loss who would like to increase coverage at specific areas but lack viable donor hair at the traditional sites (i.e., scalp, back of the neck). Sometimes the lack of sufficient donor hair is the result of having had prior transplants.
Since hair transplants are a surgical procedure, you must be in good health prior to the intervention. Smoking increases the risk of surgical complications, so if you smoke, consider quitting at least 4 – 6 weeks before the procedure.
You may also be a good candidate for a hair transplant with body hair if you:
- Have naturally thin hair, bald patches, or severe baldness
- Underwent laser hair removal in the past and now wish to reverse it
- Wish to cover or conceal a scar
- Have lost hair due to injury, trauma, or burns
- Are going through gender reassignment and want to achieve a more feminine or masculine appearance
- Have realistic expectations regarding the transplant, recovery, and final results
The best way to know if you are a candidate for a hair transplant from body hair is to schedule a consultation at the Foundation for Hair Restoration. During your initial appointment, Dr. Epstein will assess your overall health and the condition of your hair to make sure you are eligible for a body hair transplant surgery. At this appointment, you and your doctor will also agree upon the desired donor site, and the estimated amount of hair grafts needed to achieve your ideal results.
* All patients are unique and individual results may vary.
How is a Body Hair Transplant Performed?
A scalp-to-body hair procedure typically involves placing 200 to as many as 3,500 or more hair grafts, depending upon the desired density and the size of the areas to be covered. Each graft, depending on the location, can have one, two, or even three hairs. The procedure is usually performed under oral sedation, but sometimes under twilight sedation for more extensive procedures. The three to eight-hour intervention is essentially painless, as is the recovery period.
For the first five days after the procedure, there will be tiny crusts around each transplanted hair. By the second day, patients are able to travel home and resume normal activities without any sign of having had a procedure. And since the FUE method requires no sutures, the healing takes only three to five days.
After the procedure, the donor area is kept covered with a special ointment provided by the office for five days to ensure the best healing. Meanwhile, the transplanted hairs will fall out by two weeks, then start to regrow – just like scalp hairs – at four months or so, then continue to grow for a lifetime.
Click here to read more about the pre and post-operative instructions for body hair transplant.
Yes, in the right hands, a body hair transplant is a viable alternative to the traditional hair transplant. In the past, patients suffering from hair loss who had insufficient scalp hair weren’t candidates for hair transplantation procedures. Now, advancements in hair restoration technologies have allowed patients to enjoy new or thicker hair at their desired location using body hair grafts from donor sites beyond the scalp.
The cost of a body hair transplant in Miami will depend on many factors, including the type of procedure (FUE vs. FUT), the number of grafts needed, the skill and experience of the provider, and your geographical location. In general, the cost of a body hair transplant can range anywhere from $5,000 to $20,000 or more.
Expect the transplanted hair to fall out within 2 to 3 weeks after the procedure, but don’t panic! This is completely normal. New hair will begin to grow back in about 3 months, with most of the new hair growth happening around the 6 to 9-month mark.
With the FUE technique of hair grafting, your surgeon will use a small surgical punch to carefully extract the follicles one by one. This technique leaves behind barely noticeable tiny “dotted” scars typically less than 1 millimeters in size.
Dr. Epstein and his team go through great lengths to ensure scarring is kept to an absolute minimum during the procedure. This includes harvesting hairs in a diffuse pattern rather than a linear one and harvesting from safe donor zones where the scars can be easily concealed.
Recovery after a body hair transplant is pretty straightforward. As there are no sutures with the FUE technique, most patients go back to their normal activities within a couple of days. Your surgical team at the Foundation for Hair Restoration will provide you with pre and post-operative instructions on how to care for and clean the donor and recipient sites, as well as oral and topical antibiotics to prevent infection.