After years of watching your hair get thinner and thinner, you’ve finally made the decision to look into hair restoration. But where do you start and how do you go about finding the right doctor in order to obtain great results?
Here is a list of important factors to consider in selecting the right hair restoration surgeon:
Is the doctor you’re considering a hair transplants specialist? There are many doctors getting involved in the hair restoration industry. Some dedicate themselves 100% to hair patients, while others offer hair transplantation as one more of their list of services. Considering your hair is front and center for everyone to see, choose a doctor that has many years of experience and specialty in the art of hair restoration.
Is the doctor board certified? A doctor that is board certified, aside from just being licensed, has taken extra medical training in order to deliver great service and results.
Is the doctor a schooled and trained surgeon? Very few hair doctors are actual surgeons. Since only a medical license is required to perform hair transplantation, there are dermatologists, family medicine and even gynecologists getting involved in the industry. Choose a doctor that has been schooled and trained in the art of surgery.
Is the doctor affiliated with The International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ISHRS)? Make sure the doctor is not only a member, but has also attended regularly to ISHRS conferences in order to keep up with hair restoration methods. Some doctors become member just so they can place the ISHRS logo on their website in order to impress prospective patients but never or hardly attend conferences.
Is the person harvesting the grafts and making the sites where the grafts will be placed a licensed medical doctor? Most State laws require a medical licensed doctor to cut into a patient’s skin. As crazy as it may sound, there are clinics that allow physician’s assistants or technicians to perform these duties. Although these staff members play a crucial role in a hair transplant procedure by separating and implanting grafts, only a medically licensed doctor should be harvesting or creating the sites where the grafts are to be placed.
Is the doctor’s medical team exclusively dedicated to hair restoration? Those doctors that perform a plethora of services use the same medical team for different types of surgery. The medical team, along with the doctor, should specialize in hair restoration exclusively.
How many procedures does the doctor perform at a time? National companies tend to perform 3-4 surgeries at a time in order to maximize their profits and help cover their huge overhead costs. Since patients invest their hard earned money, they should receive full-time attention during their procedure.
If you’re considering the Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) method, does the doctor use highly marketed FUE equipment that requires they pay royalties to these companies? There are several highly efficient FUE tools available in the industry. It’s not necessary to choose a doctor that pays equipment companies a royalty fee of $1/graft per harvest attempt. Who pays for this? The patient does! Choose a doctor who has the latest FUE equipment, with no strings attached to manufacturers, and keep the extra money in your pocket!
How many before/after pictures does the doctor have available for you to review? If they don’t have many pictures to show you, it means they don’t have much experience nor specialize in hair restoration. Be careful with generic pictures given to non-specialist doctors from FUE equipment companies. Also, national companies tend to show results from other doctors in the organization. Make sure the before/after pictures you’re shown are from the doctor you are considering.
Does the doctor you’re considering have any medical infractions? Visit the medical license board websites and search to see if the doctor you’re considering has any medical violations or patient complaints.