Hair transplant has become the go to solution for people suffering from hair loss, the world over. The procedure isnot just a lot more sophisticated but also more readily available, compared to a few years ago. While people are becoming more open to the procedure, the cost can sometimes be a deterrent. In most developed countries, it is still an expensive surgery but in countries like India hair transplant is extremely affordable and there are good surgeons available in almost all major cities.
While in the U.S., a hair restoration procedure can cost somewhere between $4,000-$16,000, in the UK it ranges from £3,000 to £30,000, depending on the stage of hair loss and the type of procedure. Compared to that in India it is only about – Rs 30,000 to Rs 2,00,000 (depending on the number of hair grafts), which can be roughly converted to $450-$3000.
The procedure involves – taking healthy hair follicles from a donor area, usually the back and rear of the head where hair growth is resistant to hair loss, and implanting them onto bald or balding spots. The transplanted hair then continues to grow naturally at the new spot.
If you are looking for a transplant, the cost of a transplant can be estimated on the basis of the following factors:
- Area of the transplant –
While estimating the hair transplant cost in India for the procedure, one of the important factors to consider is the area of hair loss and bald spots, which need to be filled in. At any consultation, the surgeon will first gauge the extent of hair loss and estimate potential future hair loss. After which the grafts needed and the area to be covered will be estimated.
Usually the extent of baldness determines how much the cost will be. Sometimes the hair loss is only on the temples, which needs to be filled in and a new hairline has to be created. Creating an aesthetically pleasing hairline is an extremely fine and detailed job. It needs artistic precision, and a good surgeon will recreate the new hairline to suit the size and shape of the head. The cost will vary depending on how many sessions are required to get the required results and the number of grafts needed. The experience of the surgeon also determines the cost.
- What does the patient wait?
The cost also depends on the expectations of the patient. While some people might just want a comb over, others will want their hairline to be completely restored. Usually surgeons suggest getting a hairline restoration as it gives the illusion of not being bald. If the patient does not have enough donor hair, the surgeon will plant more grafts along the parting and less in the middle. The amount of skill and precision required for the desired results will determine the time the surgeon will spend on your scalp, which will impact he cost.
- Number of grafts needed
The number of grafts need is the most essential factor that you will have to consider while estimating the cost of the transplant.
Let’s take an average patient as an example to understand this. An average patient who is bald has about 5000-6000 grafts in the donor area. Now these will have to be divided for transplant on the front and back of the crown. There will be a hairline created on the front, which means that the patient will need about 3500-4000 grafts there. The rest can be used on the back of the crown.
Clinics usually charge per graft, so you can do your calculation accordingly. However be mindful of the distinction between hair and hair follicle. One graft or hair follicle is equal to 2.2 hairs. Many clinics in India charge on the basis of the hair and not on the grafts. This means that the procedure might cost you a lot more than you calculated (if you calculated on a per graft basis). The clinic during the consultation might keep it vague and not explain the difference between a follicle and hair. Therefore it’s best to clarify that. It will also take about 2-3 sessions for an average patient.
You can also use online calculators to determine the number of grafts needed. There are lot of online tools that help you estimate how many grafts you might need according to the stage of baldness and areas of hair loss on the scalp.
It is best to set up consultations with a few clinics and then do a comparative analysis. But don’t let the price be the only determining factor as the experience of the surgeon will determine what your hair will look like finally.. The general rule while looking for a surgeon is to find someone who is reputed and has significant experience. Which might mean that you will have to pay a little more but it is worth the extra cost compared to the risk of going to a novice who might not be able to deliver what you expected?