What’s Important in Choosing the Doctor Who Performs Your Hair Transplant?
I have been practicing in the field of hair restoration surgery for more than 27 years and have been asked—appropriately—why a patient should choose me as their doctor.
There are several reasons for which one should determine which hair loss surgeon should be the one to choose to perform your transplant. They include:
Does he or she perform this procedure as his’ or hers fulltime practice?
- There are no residency programs in this field of cosmetic surgery.
- The specialty of hair restoration surgery is one where a doctor should train with an experienced hair restoration surgeon in order to learn and to develop both the surgical and aesthetic skills to properly evaluate and treat hair loss patients.
- Ask the doctor with whom he or she trained and check up on it.
- Going to a three-day seminar is woefully inadequate as far as training!
- If the surgeon does not perform these procedures every day, then he or she often does not have enough cases to gain and to maintain the expertise necessary to be good at this aesthetic surgery.
Does he or she regularly participate and teach at conferences and seminars and workshops specifically in the field of hair restoration surgery?
- The International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ISHRS) is the world’s foremost authority on medical and surgery treatment of hair loss. This medical organization provides educational programs and live surgery workshops to doctors in this field. The more a surgeon is involved and participates in this society, the better.
- Additionally, there are other hair restoration surgical organizations around the world, which provide educational opportunities such as the American Society of Hair Restoration Surgery, the Italian Society for Hair Restoration, the Brazilian Association of Hair Restoration Surgery, the European Society of Hair Restoration Surgery, the Japanese Society for Clinical Hair Restoration, the Korean Hair Research Association, among others. If the surgeon has been invited to teach at these organizations, then it is a very good additional point to consider in choosing one’s hair doctor.
Are there any negative reports to his or her state medical board on the doctor?
- It’s always a good idea to check one’s state medical board for any infraction that may be registered with the state medical board.
Does the surgeon have a good reputation in his or her community?
- We all know which doctors have a good reputation or not in our own communities.
- Ask friends and family; ask your family physician; ask your hair stylist.
Make the time to meet with the hair restoration surgeon.
- You would meet the cardiovascular surgeon before your bypass or the urologist before your vasectomy or the plastic surgeon before your hysterectomy— Make the time to meet your hair doctor!
- At this encounter you will get to develop a sense on what kind of professional he or she is; what kind of person he or she is; how the office looks and feels; whether or not he or she really does practice hair restoration surgery on a fulltime basis;
- Talk to reference patients who have been kind enough to make themselves available to speak with you.
- Look at pre-operative and post-operative images of hair loss patients who have given authorization that their images could be used for such a purpose.
- Don’t call the doctor’s phone or e-mail to his or her website and ask how much a surgery is! This is a question that cannot be fairly answered (for you and for the surgeon) via these kinds of communication.
- Take the time necessary to gain the education that your hair restoration’s surgical practice can offer to you to get your questions answered appropriately through visiting the practice in person.
Evaluate the surgeon’s credentials in the field of hair restoration surgery.
- He or she can be the very best dermatologist, family physician, plastic surgeon, gynecologist, psychiatrist, ER doctor, general surgeon, etc., but does he or her practice in THIS field full time?
- It is easy enough to search out information about a particular doctor to learn if he or she is just doing hair transplants as a side source of income or just a portion of his or her practice. Do your homework to learn such things about him or her.
- They may have the best hair-related website or are doing lots of advertising on TV or radio, but are they doing this procedure as their fulltime practice?
I hope this gives you some points of information in choosing the doctor who you might choose to be your hair restoration surgeon. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.