12 Common Side Effects Of Hair Transplant Surgery And How To Deal With Them

hair, hair care, hair transplant

Scalp Swelling and Tenderness

Scalp swelling and tenderness are common side effects after a hair transplant procedure. The trauma caused to the scalp during surgery can lead to these symptoms. To alleviate these discomforts, it is recommended to apply cold compresses to the affected area. The cold temperature can help reduce swelling and provide relief. Additionally, taking prescribed pain medications as directed by your doctor can help manage the tenderness and discomfort effectively.

Itching and Tingling Sensation

Itching and tingling sensations on the scalp post-surgery are also common occurrences. These sensations can be a sign of the healing process taking place. It is important to avoid scratching the transplanted area to prevent damaging the newly transplanted grafts. Instead, you can gently pat the itchy area to relieve the sensation. If the itching persists, consulting your doctor for recommended remedies or medications can provide further relief and ensure proper healing of the transplanted hair follicles.

Shock Hair Loss

Shock hair loss, also known as temporary shedding of transplanted hair, can be distressing for some patients. This phenomenon typically occurs a few weeks after the surgery and is part of the natural healing process. While it may seem alarming, rest assured that new hair growth will typically begin after a few months. Patience is key during this phase, and it is vital to trust the expertise of your surgeon and maintain regular follow-ups to monitor the progress of your hair growth.

Redness and Irritation

Redness and irritation of the scalp are common side effects post-surgery and are a result of the body’s inflammatory response to the procedure. These symptoms usually subside within a few weeks as the scalp heals. To promote healing and reduce inflammation, it is crucial to avoid exposure to direct sunlight, as UV rays can exacerbate redness and irritation. It is important to follow your doctor’s aftercare instructions diligently to ensure optimal healing of the scalp and minimize any discomfort.

Numbness or Lack of Sensation

Some patients may experience temporary numbness or lack of sensation in the donor or recipient areas following a hair transplant. This is a normal response of the nerves to the surgical trauma and is usually temporary. Gentle massage of the affected areas can help in stimulating the nerves and restoring sensitivity over time. Adhering to the post-operative care guidelines provided by your surgeon is essential in facilitating the recovery of sensation in the scalp.

Crusting of the Scalp

Crusting of the scalp is a common occurrence post-surgery due to the formation of scabs over the transplanted area. These scabs are a natural part of the healing process and should not be picked or scratched. Doing so can lead to infection and compromise the success of the transplant. Following your doctor’s advice on washing and caring for the scalp is imperative in ensuring the scabs heal properly and do not result in any complications.

Swelling Around the Eyes

In some cases, swelling around the eyes may develop after a hair transplant procedure. This swelling is usually a result of fluid accumulation and is a temporary side effect. Applying cold compresses to the eyes and keeping the head elevated can help reduce the swelling. It is important to rest and avoid strenuous activities during this time to allow the swelling to resolve naturally. If the swelling persists or worsens, consulting your doctor for further guidance is recommended.

Ingrown Hairs

Ingrown hairs can occasionally develop in the transplanted area, leading to discomfort and potential complications. To prevent the occurrence of ingrown hairs, it is essential to carefully follow your doctor’s instructions on cleaning and caring for the scalp post-surgery. Should ingrown hairs develop, seeking prompt medical attention and guidance from your surgeon is crucial to addressing the issue effectively. Your doctor may recommend specific treatments or interventions to manage ingrown hairs and prevent them from affecting the success of the transplant.

Scar Formation

While modern hair transplant techniques aim to minimize scarring, there is a possibility that some patients may develop visible scars post-surgery. Proper wound care and adherence to scar management protocols recommended by your doctor can help in reducing the appearance of scars. Using scar-reducing ointments or creams as advised by your surgeon can aid in the healing process and promote the fading of scars over time. It is essential to follow your doctor’s recommendations closely to achieve the best possible outcome in scar management.

Uneven Hair Growth

Uneven hair growth post-transplantation is a common concern for some patients and can affect the overall aesthetic outcome of the procedure. Addressing uneven hair growth may require additional hair transplant sessions or alternative treatments as recommended by your doctor. Regular follow-ups with your surgeon are essential in monitoring the progress of your hair growth and determining the need for further interventions. Patience is key in achieving the desired results, and open communication with your surgeon regarding any concerns about uneven growth is important for developing an appropriate treatment plan.


Infection is a rare but serious complication that can occur after a hair transplant surgery. To minimize the risk of infection, maintaining proper hygiene practices and keeping the scalp clean are paramount. It is crucial to follow your doctor’s instructions on post-operative care to reduce the likelihood of infection. If you notice any signs of infection such as increased redness, swelling, or discharge from the surgical site, contacting your surgeon immediately for evaluation and treatment is imperative. Early detection and prompt management of infections can prevent potential complications and ensure successful healing following the procedure.

Serena Page

A journalism student at the University of Florida, Serena writes mostly about health and health-related subjects. On her time off, she enjoys binge-watching her favorite shows on Netflix or going on a weekend get-away.