Men are changing the way they think about their appearance—some do not want to accept what nature has given them and are willing to use cosmetic surgery to look better. Men’s attitudes about cosmetic surgery are changing, too. They no longer think of it as being for women only. Once thought of as a status symbol for the wealthy and famous, cosmetic surgery is now more accepted by the gen- eral public, including men. In fact, the number of cosmetic surgery procedures performed on men is increasing dramatically.
Liposuction, in which pockets of fat are suctioned from the body to improve the contour of the face, neck, trunk, or limbs, is the most common cosmetic surgery procedure performed on men. The second most common procedure among men is eyelid surgery, the third is nose reshaping, and the fourth is breast reduction surgery. Other types of cosmetic surgery performed on men include facelifts, facial resurfacing (skin-smoothing treatments for the face), facial implant surgery, abdominoplasty, chest implant surgery, calf implant sur- gery, and hair replacement surgery.
More and more men are having cosmetic surgery to look and feel younger and to give themselves a competitive edge in the workplace.
Choosing a Surgeon
If you are considering cosmetic surgery, it is important to ﬁnd a well-trained and experienced plastic surgeon. The ﬁrst step in this process is to assemble a list of qualiﬁed doctors; there are several sources from which you can develop such a list. For example, if a friend or family member has had cosmetic surgery and is pleased with the results, ask him or her for the surgeon’s name. Your doctor also may be able to recommend some plastic surgeons in your area. Local hospitals can provide the names of plastic surgeons on staff. However, the best way to
locate a qualiﬁed plastic surgeon in your area is to contact a local or national professional association of plastic surgeons or your state medical society. These organizations also can tell you whether the doctors on your list are board-certiﬁed (see page 94).
Once you have narrowed your choices to two or three doctors, schedule an interview with each one so you can discuss his or her approach to the procedure and ask about fees. Because health insurance plans do not usually cover the cost of cosmetic surgery, you will need to determine whether the surgeon offers pay- ment plans or whether he or she accepts credit cards. When you call for an appointment, ask for brochures about the surgery in question and read through them before your visit so you can ask informed questions about the procedure and its risks and possible outcomes. Write down your questions in advance. Make sure that the surgeon provides you with realistic expectations about the potential results of the surgery. Ask to see photographs of other patients who have had the procedure you are considering. Ask the surgeon to explain any terms you do not understand. After the interviews, you will be in a good position to make an informed decision.
Preparing for Surgery
Once you have decided on a cosmetic procedure and have selected a qualiﬁed surgeon, you are ready to begin preparing for surgery. During your ﬁrst meeting with the surgeon you have selected, he or she probably will ask you to explain your reasons for wanting to have the procedure and how you expect to look and feel after surgery. Open communication between you and the surgeon is crucial when planning your surgery, so be candid about what you hope to achieve through surgery. The surgeon will explain whether you will have surgery in the doctor’s ofﬁce, at an outpatient surgery center, or at a hospital. He or she also will discuss the type of anesthesia that will be used. Any type of surgery carries risks, so make sure that you ask questions to help you fully understand the risks of the surgery you are considering. Although complications do not occur very often and usually are minor, the outcome of surgery is never fully predictable. The risks of cosmetic surgery include injury to the skin or a nerve, infection, or an adverse reaction to anesthesia or medication. Serious complications also can include formation of fat or blood clots that could travel to the lungs and cause injury or even death. There also is the possibility that you will be disappointed with the cosmetic results of the surgery. You can lower your risk of complica- tions by following your surgeon’s instructions carefully.
The surgeon will take photographs of you before and after surgery so the two of you can evaluate the results of the procedure. Before surgery the doctor will closely examine the part of your body to be altered and will discuss a number of issues related to the speciﬁc type of surgery you wish to have. For example, if you are planning to have a facelift, the doctor will closely evaluate your head
and neck, checking to see if your hairline is receding, how far your beard grows up your cheeks and down your neck, and whether you have any facial scars or sun-damaged skin. He or she also will note whether your neck skin is loose or “jowly.” The doctor will talk to you about the bruising and swelling that will occur after surgery. He or she also will discuss potential scarring.
The surgeon will ask whether you have any chronic diseases or conditions, such as high blood pressure or a blood clotting disorder, that could cause prob- lems during surgery or affect the healing process. People with diabetes, chronic heart or lung disease, or poor circulation also have a higher risk of surgical complications. Tell the surgeon if you take any medication (prescription or nonprescription) or vitamins. Some drugs, such as aspirin, and some vitamins, such as vitamin E, can interfere with blood clotting. Also tell the doctor if you smoke. Smoking inhibits blood ﬂow and can affect the way your skin heals after surgery.
There are no guarantees when it comes to the results of cosmetic surgery. Be sure that you have realistic expectations about how you hope to look and feel after the procedure. Discuss your expectations fully with your doctor and listen carefully to his or her description of the proposed outcome. Do not expect cos- metic surgery to stop or reverse the aging process. Although cosmetic surgery can enhance your appearance and increase your self-conﬁdence, it will not nec- essarily match your ideal image or cause other people to treat you differently. The ﬁnal result may differ from what you have in mind.
Recovery from cosmetic surgery takes time, and the signs of the surgery (such as swelling or bruising) may be visible for days or weeks after the procedure. Try to schedule your surgery during your vacation so the treated area will be fully healed by the time you return to work. Before surgery, be sure to closely follow your doctor’s instructions about eating and drinking, smoking, and taking or avoiding certain drugs or vitamins. If you develop a cold or an infection before surgery, your procedure may need to be postponed.
You probably will be groggy from the anesthesia, so be sure to arrange in advance for someone to drive you home after surgery. Plan on taking it easy for the ﬁrst few days after surgery. Depending on the type of procedure you have had, you may need to temporarily avoid strenuous activity. Follow your doctor’s instructions about resuming your normal activities.
Liposuction and Abdominoplasty
Liposuction, the most common cosmetic surgery procedure performed on men, is a procedure that can improve the contour of your body by removing stubborn pockets of fat that you have not been able to remove through exercise or diet. During the procedure, the plastic surgeon uses a vacuum device to suction these unwanted fat deposits from speciﬁc areas of the body. For men, these areas are usually the abdomen, the ﬂanks (“love handles”), or the chest. Other possible
areas include the hips, buttocks, thighs, knees, upper arms, chin, cheeks, and neck. The best candidates for liposuction are men of normal weight with ﬁrm skin who have excess fat deposits in certain areas of the body. Liposuction is not a weight-loss method; you should be at or near your ideal weight before surgery.
Liposuction can be performed in a surgeon’s ofﬁce, in an outpatient surgery center, or in a hospital, depending on the amount of fat to be removed. If only a small amount of fat is to be removed, the procedure can be performed using a local anesthetic. Removing large amounts of fat from extensive areas of the body requires either regional anesthesia, which numbs a large area of the body, or gen- eral anesthesia. In some cases a surgeon may use general anesthesia if the person does not want to remain conscious during the procedure.
Before suctioning, the surgeon injects large volumes of saline solution that contains epinephrine. Epinephrine limits blood loss by constricting blood vessels and allows more fat to be removed. This technique, which also reduces post- operative bruising, is called tumescent liposuction. Some surgeons also may use high-frequency sound waves to help break up the fat before it is suctioned. This technique is called ultrasonic liposuction. It has not yet been shown that ultra- sonic liposuction improves the results. During the procedure, the surgeon makes a small incision and inserts a narrow tube into the body. Attached to the other end of the tube is a vacuum pump or a large syringe used to suction out the fat. If the surgeon plans to suction fat from more than one area of the body, he or she will then repeat the procedure at the other targeted areas. To replace ﬂuids lost along with the fat and to prevent shock, the surgeon or the anesthesiologist (a physician trained to administer anesthesia) gives ﬂuids through a vein during and after surgery. When all targeted areas have been suctioned, the surgeon will close the incisions with sutures.
After surgery, ﬂuid will drain from the incisions and, in rare cases, the doctor may insert a small drainage tube under the skin to prevent ﬂuid from building up. You may have to wear a snugly ﬁtting elastic garment over the treated area for a number of days to help control swelling. To prevent infection, the doctor may prescribe oral antibiotics. You will probably experience a modest amount of pain for the ﬁrst week after surgery. The pain can be treated with pain relievers. You should be able to return to work within 3 days to a week, depending on the extent of the procedure and the type of work you do. Initially, the suctioned area will show signiﬁcant bruising and swelling. The bruising usually clears up in about 2 to 3 weeks; the swelling generally clears up in about 3 months. Keep in mind that you will not be able to see the ﬁnal results until the swelling has completely subsided. Final scarring is usually small and unobtrusive. A small percentage of people will experience minor irregularities and asymmetries in the suctioned area, which can be corrected with a second “touch-up” procedure.
Some men may request liposuction in the abdominal area and learn that abdominoplasty, commonly called a “tummy tuck,” will more effectively help
them reach their goal of a trimmer abdomen. Abdominoplasty is the operation of choice when the problem is excess abdominal skin, usually due to signiﬁcant weight loss. Unlike liposuction, however, abdominoplasty leaves a permanent scar that stretches from one hip to the other. As with liposuction, for best results, candidates for abdominoplasty should be at or near their ideal weight.
During abdominoplasty, the surgeon removes excess skin and fat and reposi- tions the navel before closing the incision. Abdominoplasty is major surgery, so you will need to stay home from work for 1 or 2 weeks, or possibly longer, to recover. Postoperative swelling will subside in several months; you will not be able to see the ﬁnal results until then. It will take about a year to determine the ﬁnal appearance of the scar. The good news is that the scar is low enough to be easily hidden beneath clothing, such as swimming trunks.
As they age, some men seek to improve the appearance of their face and neck through cosmetic surgery. Facial surgery covers a number of different proce- dures, including a facelift and forehead lift, eyelid surgery, nose surgery, facial implant surgery, and reﬁnishing treatments for facial skin (such as chemical peels and dermabrasion). Sometimes two or more of these procedures are per- formed at the same time. Although facial surgery cannot reverse the aging process, it can give the face a younger, rejuvenated look that can increase your self-conﬁdence and sense of well-being.
With age, the muscles and skin of the face and neck begin to sag, and the skin begins to lose elasticity. A facelift can restore a more youthful appearance by removing excess fat, tightening underlying muscles, and repositioning the skin over the face and the neck. Most people who have a facelift are in their 40s, 50s, and 60s, but even older people can beneﬁt from the procedure. Before deciding to have a facelift, discuss the procedure with a board-certiﬁed (see page 94) plas- tic surgeon to determine whether this type of surgery is right for you.
Before the procedure, your surgeon will evaluate your face and discuss your expectations about the surgery. He or she also will describe the risks and beneﬁts of the surgery and discuss the costs involved. In addition, the surgeon will describe the procedure itself and the type of anesthesia to be used. You may want to grow your hair a bit longer before having surgery to help hide the scars afterward.
To perform a facelift, the surgeon makes an incision behind the hairline begin- ning at each temple, extending down in front of the ear, and continuing around behind the ear down to the lower scalp. He or she also may make a second inci- sion, under the chin, if the neck is also being treated. Separating the skin from the fat and muscle below, the surgeon then trims or suctions fat from the areas
around the neck and chin and tightens the underlying muscle. The skin is then pulled back over the face, and the excess skin is trimmed away. The surgeon closes the incisions with sutures. He or she may temporarily place a small tube under the skin behind the ear to drain any collected blood or ﬂuid.
After surgery you probably will feel numbness and swelling in your face. These sensations are normal. Keeping your head elevated and still will minimize the swelling. Your face may look bruised and puffy, but it will look more normal after a few weeks. The surgeon will remove your stitches in about a week. Most people return to work in 1 or 2 weeks. The surgery causes mild pain that can be treated with pain relievers such as acetaminophen.
You may ﬁnd that you have to begin shaving in new areas because beard- growing skin may have been repositioned to the back of your neck or behind your ears. Any scars from the facelift will most likely be hidden by your hair or by the natural creases in your face and neck. The scars will gradually fade. Your facelift will probably last about 10 years; to retain your youthful appearance, you may have to repeat the procedure.
A forehead lift, also called a brow lift, is designed to restore a more youthful appearance to the forehead and make the person look more rested and alert by smoothing out lines and raising the eyebrows. Although it can help people of any age with deep wrinkles in their foreheads, a forehead lift is most often performed on people between ages 40 and 70. It is often performed at the same time as a facelift.
Plastic surgeons can perform a forehead lift in either of two ways. In the tra- ditional method, the surgeon makes an incision across the top of the forehead, under the hairline, from ear to ear. Next, the surgeon lifts away the skin of the forehead so he or she can remove or reposition the underlying muscle, which is the source of the wrinkles. He or she will then pull the forehead skin upward and trim away any excess skin and also may elevate the eyebrows before replacing the skin of the forehead and closing the incision with sutures or clips.
In an endoscopic forehead lift, the surgeon uses an endoscope (a ﬂexible viewing instrument that transmits images to a video monitor). The surgeon inserts the endoscope under the skin of the forehead through four or ﬁve small incisions in the scalp. The endoscope allows the surgeon to see and work on the muscle and tissues beneath the skin. After completing the procedure, the sur- geon will close the incisions with sutures or clips. This procedure is ideal for men with little hair because the scars are very small.
If you have undergone a traditional forehead lift, you probably will experi- ence some pain, swelling, and numbness in the treated area. Keeping your head elevated and as still as possible will minimize swelling. The pain may be replaced by itching as the incision heals. The surgeon probably will remove the
sutures or clips in 2 weeks. Recovery from an endoscopic forehead lift is quicker and less painful than recovery from a traditional forehead lift. Stitches or clips usually are removed within a week. You can return to work in about 10 days after either type of forehead lift.
The aging process causes the skin of the eyelids to droop, and fat often begins to accumulate above and below the eyes, producing “bags.” Eyelid surgery (known medically as blepharoplasty) can be used to alleviate these age-related changes. Now the second most common type of plastic surgery performed on men, eyelid surgery can give you a younger appearance but will not remove crow’s-feet or other wrinkles from around the eyes, eliminate dark circles, or raise sagging eyebrows. In some cases, eyelid surgery can actually improve vision if the eye- lids droop and stretch so much that they cover part of the eyes. Most eyelid sur- gery is performed on people over age 35.
While planning your eyelid surgery, the surgeon will test your vision and check your ability to produce tears. Having dry eyes or not being able to produce enough tears can make the procedure more risky. Other disorders that increase the risks of eyelid surgery include a detached retina, glaucoma, thyroid prob- lems, high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. The surgeon will discuss the risks of the procedure and possible complica-
tions that can occur, such as temporary double or blurred vision, temporary swelling at the corners of the eyes, sensitivity to light, and the appear- ance of whiteheads near the surgical site. Some people may have difﬁculty closing their eyes while sleeping after eyelid surgery, but this com- plication is usually temporary.
Using local or general anesthesia, the surgeon will make incisions in the creases of your upper lids (and beneath the lashes of the lower lids if they are to be altered). The surgeon removes excess skin, trims excess fat, and closes the inci- sions with ﬁne sutures. In some cases the incision is made inside the lower lid to avoid producing visible scars.
You will have to keep your head elevated for a few days after surgery. Cold compresses placed on your eyes will help to reduce swelling. The surgeon may prescribe eyedrops to keep your eyes moist. After 3 to 5 days, your sutures will be removed. Contact lens wearers can resume
wearing their lenses in a week. Postoperative pain is minimal, and most people do not need pain relievers. Bruising is common and usually clears up in 1 or 2 weeks. Most people can return to work in a few days.
Surgery to reshape the nose, known as rhinoplasty, can change the appearance of your nose in a number of ways. The surgeon can alter your nose’s size, remove a hump, alter the tip, narrow the nostrils, or change its angle. Nasal surgery can even relieve some breathing problems, such as those caused by a deviated sep- tum (crookedness of the thin wall of cartilage and bone that divides the nostrils).
When discussing nose-reshaping surgery, you and the surgeon will work together to develop a concept or goal for a new shape that will balance the rest of your face and enhance your appearance. How closely your ﬁnal result resembles this goal is unpredictable. Your surgeon also will explain the risks and possible complications of nose reshaping, which, although rare, include infection, nose- bleed, and impaired breathing. In about one in 10 people, nasal surgery has to be repeated to correct a minor irregularity or problem with the cosmetic result.
During surgery, the surgeon separates the skin over the nose from the under- lying supporting structures of bone and cartilage so he or she can reshape them. The skin is then replaced over the nose. After the procedure, the surgeon places a splint on the nose to help retain the new shape.
Following surgery, your face will be swollen and you may have slight pain in your nose along with a headache. Swelling and bruising also will appear around the eyes. You can reduce the swelling by applying cold, wet compresses over the areas. You will not be able to blow your nose for about a week to allow the area to fully heal. After 5 to 7 days the surgeon will remove the splint and any sutures or nasal packing; you can then return to work. Although you will be allowed to wear contact lenses, you will not be able to wear glasses for about 6 weeks, unless you tape them to your forehead to avoid direct pressure on the nose. In some cases it may take a year for the swelling to completely subside and reveal the ﬁnal result.
Many people have skin-reﬁnishing procedures to achieve smoother-looking skin. The most common types of procedures include chemical peeling, dermabrasion, and laser skin resurfacing. The main difference between a chemical peel and dermabrasion and laser skin resurfacing is that the two latter procedures use sur- gical instruments to remove the top layer of skin, while a chemical peel uses a chemical solution.
Chemical Peel Doctors use chemical peels to enhance the texture of facial skin by creating a superﬁcial, self-healing burn to remove damaged outer layers. A
chemical peel may be recommended for men who have wrinkles or blemishes from sun exposure or who have uneven skin coloring. Sometimes doctors also use a chemical peel to remove precancerous skin growths, improve the appear- ance of acne scars, or control acne.
There are three main types of chemicals used in a chemical peel: alpha- hydroxy acids (AHAs), trichloroacetic acid (TCA), and phenol. Common AHAs include glycolic, lactic, and fruit acids. They are the mildest chemical peel for- mulas but usually have to be reapplied a number of times to achieve the best results. TCA is generally stronger than AHAs but still may require repeated treatments. Before the peel, the doctor may apply a vitamin A–containing cream (tretinoin) that enhances the results of the peel. AHA and TCA peels (light peels) require minimal recovery time. They refresh the skin by removing dead cells from the surface of the skin and stimulate formation of new collagen (a tough, ﬁbrous, structural protein that is an important part of body tissues) to reduce future wrinkling. These peels do not remove existing wrinkles.
Phenol is the strongest chemical available for chemical peels and is used to minimize coarse wrinkles and scars from acne. Results are striking and long- lasting, but healing can take up to several months. Phenol peels (deep peels) cre- ate a superﬁcial burn that heals in about a week, revealing pinker skin. The pinker skin fades to a more normal tone in several months, but this tone may be lighter than the surrounding skin. Although the initial pinker skin is quite notice- able, it can easily be hidden with makeup. However, because most men are not willing to wear makeup, deep peeling is generally not a practical choice for men. Anesthesia is not required for a light peel, but it is required for the deeper, phe- nol peel. During a light peel you may feel some temporary stinging or burning as the doctor applies the solution to your face. After having the procedure you need to use a strong sunblock on your face to protect the sensitive skin from burning. Sunblock also helps to prevent the irregular skin coloring that can occur after a phenol peel.
Some states do not require that a chemical peel be done by a licensed physi- cian, but it is important to ﬁnd a doctor (or a registered nurse who works under a doctor’s supervision) with experience in giving chemical peels because the procedure carries some risk of infection and scarring. After your treatment you will probably notice that the skin on your face is red and dry. It also may scale or ﬂake somewhat. These conditions are only temporary. After a phenol peel your face may swell considerably—your eyes may even swell shut—and you may need someone to help out at home for a couple of days. The chemical peel will give your face a fresh, new look but will not prevent any future signs of aging or damage from sun exposure.
Dermabrasion Dermabrasion helps to rejuvenate the skin by controlled surgi- cal sanding of the face. Doctors use dermabrasion to treat skin that has been
scarred by accidents or surgery or to smooth facial wrinkles. Neither procedure is recommended for people with dark skin because their complexions could become permanently blotchy or discolored. In fact, a change in skin color is the most common complication, even in light-skinned people.
It is best to seek dermabrasion from a qualiﬁed plastic surgeon or dermatolo- gist; the technique is sometimes offered by inadequately trained nonphysicians. Dermabrasion requires local anesthesia, given along with a calming sedative. Serious cases of wrinkles or scarring may require general anesthesia. To perform dermabrasion, the doctor “sandpapers” away the top layer of skin, using a motor- ized wire brush device.
After surgery, your skin will be swollen and feel sore, as if you fell and scraped the side of your face. The skin on your face will scab over and, when the scab falls away, new, pinker skin will be revealed. You will not be able to shave for a while; follow your doctor’s instructions about when to resume shaving. Your face will heal in about a week, but your skin will be pinker than usual for several months. You will need to use a strong sunblock to protect the sensitive skin from burning until the pink has faded to a more normal tone. This tone may be lighter than the surrounding skin; using sunblock also helps prevent this irreg- ular skin coloring.
Laser Skin Resurfacing Surgeons sometimes use lasers to treat ﬁne lines, wrinkles, scars, and various skin lesions. Some surgeons believe that the precise nature of the laser makes it the treatment of choice. A laser is a device that focuses highly concentrated beams of light on the surface of the skin to create a controlled, superﬁcial burn that heals on its own. Laser treatment requires either local or general anes- thesia. Your face will heal in about a week, but your skin will be noticeably pinker for several months. You will need to use a strong sunblock to protect the sensitive skin from burning until the pink has faded to a more normal tone. This tone may be lighter than the surrounding skin; sunblock also helps pre- vent this irregular skin coloring. Resistance to wearing makeup to cover the pinker skin while it heals makes this pro- cedure an impractical choice for most men.
Laser Skin Resurfacing
Facial implants can help make the contours of your face more pleasing by bal- ancing your facial features. The most common types of facial implants are those of the cheeks, chin, and jaw. Facial implants are typically offered to men and women of any age who want to enhance the appearance of their face. Implants
also can be used in other parts of the body—such as the chest or calves (see below)—to contour them and make them look more muscular.
Usually performed using local or general anesthesia, facial implant surgery can take 30 minutes to an hour. Most implants are made of solid silicone, which has not been shown to be harmful. Talk to your plastic surgeon if you have con- cerns about the safety of the implanted material. Various shapes and sizes of implants are available to simulate natural cheekbones and jawbones. During the procedure the surgeon will make an incision and insert the implant. The incision is often made inside the mouth, so the scar will not be visible. He or she will then close the incision with dissolving sutures.
Swelling can be signiﬁcant after surgery, especially during the ﬁrst 48 hours. The doctor probably will restrict your diet (to soft foods and liquids) and activi- ties for a few days, depending on the type of surgery you have had. He or she also will give you instructions about cleaning your teeth. Complications are infrequent but can include infection. The implant also can shift out of place after surgery, requiring a second operation to correct its placement. Recovery time for a facial implant is usually minimal, but you should check with your surgeon before returning to work.
Chest Implants and Calf Implants
Implants can be used to augment the contours of the chest or calves. Surgery for either type of implant is performed under general anesthesia. For a chest implant the incision is made under the arm, and the implant is inserted over the pectoral muscles. For a calf implant the incisions are made behind the knees, and the implants are inserted over the calf muscles. Each operation lasts about 1 to 2 hours. Usually you can return to work about 1 week after surgery. You can begin exercising again about 1 month after surgery. Infection, although rare, is a pos- sible complication of either surgery.
Hair Replacement Surgery
Hair replacement surgery for male pattern baldness is one of the most common cosmetic surgery procedures performed on men. Usually it involves grafting hair from the sides and back of the person’s scalp (called the donor sites) to the bald area. Sometimes this technique is combined with another procedure called scalp reduction, in which the surgeon removes skin from bald areas of the scalp and uses elastic scalp extenders and expanders placed under the skin to stretch the remaining skin over the scalp. In another surgical procedure, called the ﬂap tech- nique, the surgeon moves areas of the scalp containing hair from the sides or back of the head to the top of the head. The ﬂaps cover more area than the usual graft, and part of the ﬂap remains attached to the original blood supply.
Hair replacement surgery is performed using local anesthesia. During the grafting procedure, long strips of scalp are harvested from the donor sites. The donor sites are then sutured. (Scars at the donor sites will be virtually invisible because they are hidden by surrounding hair.) The strips of scalp are then divided into hundreds of small grafts, each containing a few hairs. The grafts are then inserted into tiny openings that the doctor has made in the bald area. Although it will be several months before the grafts take hold and begin to grow hair, once hairs begin to grow, they are as permanent as the hairs at the donor sites.
After surgery you may experience aching, throbbing, and tightness in the scalp area. You will need to wear bandages over the grafted area overnight; the bandages will be removed the next day.
The doctor will tell you to avoid washing your hair for 2 days after surgery. When you wash your hair, wash it gently. Because strenuous activity increases blood ﬂow to the scalp, you will need to avoid vigorous exercise and sexual activity until your doctor tells you otherwise. Avoid all contact sports and other activities that may cause damage to the treated area. Any sutures will be removed within 7 to 10 days. Several separate surgical procedures may be needed to com- plete the hair replacement, depending on the size of the bald area. A year may pass before the grafted hair is totally grown.
The type of hair replacement procedure you choose depends on the kind of hair loss you have. If you are considering hair replacement surgery, discuss your options with your plastic surgeon to determine the best choice to meet your needs.