Restore lost eyelashes
Eyelash hair transplantation, also known as eyelash implants, was originally indicated for the restoration of areas of eyelashes lost as a result of prior cancer surgery or trauma, or from completely missing eyelashes due to genetic issues. However, with improvements in results, most of these procedures are performed for cosmetic indications, such as to restore density to thinning or short eyelashes, or to treat the loss of eyelashes due to trichotillomania (compulsive plucking).
In almost all cases, this procedure is only performed on the upper eyelids, due to the much greater consistency of good regrowth than when transplanting lower eyelashes. The donor hairs come from the scalp, which will continue to grow for a lifetime and therefore need to be trimmed typically once a month, as well as frequently trained and curled to the desired shape is desired. The hairs are usually transplanted two at a time, optimizing achievable density while not compromising naturalness.
* All patients are unique and individual results may vary.
Options for evaluation
CONSULT IN PERSON – You can meet with Dr. Epstein in the Miami office if you live in or will be visiting south Florida. Here you can not only have a chance to discuss your goals and undergo a full evaluation, but also see the modern facility that is designed with patient comfort and safety in mind. Our office is located in South Miami close to Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, downtown Miami and Miami Beach, and is just 20 minutes from Miami International Airport. The office is on the campus of South Miami Hospital (affiliated with Baptist Health), and provides covered underground parking and sufficient privacy. Please be sure to bring your parking ticket for validation. You can schedule a consultation or learn more by clicking HERE.
CONSULT BY WEBCAM – Dr. Epstein is no stranger to webcams, having provided hundreds of patients consultations over the past five years. Today, this has become the most popular method for patients to “meet” Dr. Epstein, especially considering that most patients are traveling from out of town. Your consult can be performed just like a regular in-office consultation, with the doctor discussing with you your goals and explaining his recommendations in a formal manner from the comfort of your home, your office, or even your car. The most common formats for the webcam are FaceTime or Zoom, but other modalities are available. You can schedule a consultation or learn more by clicking HERE.
EVALUATION BY PHOTO REVIEW – This is an easy way to have your case evaluated, without any charge. By sending your photos, along with information on your age, hair loss history, any prior therapies or procedures, family history of hair loss, and your goals, Dr. Epstein can provide his recommendations and advice. If desired, once you receive his recommendations, you can have a webcam or in-office consultation to learn more, however by photo review you will have the opportunity to ask questions and speak with his assistant Roxy or Dannette who will be able to guide you through this process.
The Eyelash Transplant Procedure
A procedure typically involves the placement of 50 to as many as 110 hairs into each upper eyelid, depending upon the existing amount of hair and the desired size and density. Performed usually under oral sedation, the local anesthesia assures an essentially painless experience- however twilight sedation is also offered. Taking two to three hours to perform, each hair is typically inserted two at a time, optimizing density with naturalness.
The donor hairs need to be at least 6cm (over 2 inches) long to allow them to be threated into their desired location. The threading optimizes the curl of the hairs which is desired for the most natural appearance. In nearly every case, the hairs come from the scalp, obtained by FUT/strip so they can be kept long, however in the occasional patient a long-hair FUE technique can be utilized but is not usually as successful. The use of body hair such as from the arms or pubic region is discouraged, as Dr. Epstein has seen patients who used body hair elsewhere with poor outcomes.
It is important that the patient understands the potential risks and downsides of the procedure. The most common is the need for regular trimming and curling of the hairs. Other risks include the development weeks to months later of tiny cysts in the upper eyelid (these are usually easily treated with heat pads and antibiotics, but occasionally can require opening up with a needle) and the more serious risk of hairs growing into the actual eye resulting in irritation and even corneal damage. While this has not happened in any of Dr. Epstein’s 40 or so eyelash transplant patients, this risk needs to be discussed.
The results of eyelash transplants are, unlike all of the other hair procedures performed by Dr. Epstein, not as consistent, with sometimes lower rates of regrowth or the hairs growing in some different directions. However, some patients achieve excellent results. Because of this, all patients are strongly encouraged by Dr. Epstein to first try the use of Latisse or similar product that can stimulate longer and thicker eyelash growth with regular use.
Recovery & Results
For the first 3 to 4 days after the procedure there is usually some moderate swelling and or bruising around the eyes. By five days, other than typically mild pinkness, patients are fully presentable without wearing dark sunglasses but the sunglasss can be worn to help conceal the work done. Sutures in the donor area are dissolvable. The transplanted eyelashes will fall out within a few weeks, then start to regrow at three months, where they will continue to grow for a lifetime.
In addition to eyelash transplants, Dr. Epstein has extensive experience and expertise in eyebrow transplants, performing more than 140 of these procedures annually. His work in this area has been featured in such magazines as NY Post and Elle.
Dr. Epstein is demonstrating an eyelash transplant procedure.
He is using an intra-op the technique of threading eyelashes for a transplant procedure.