African Americans: How Ethnicity Plays a Role in Hair Transplants

There is an aspect of hair restoration that isn’t often mentioned, but which is of massive importance: how ethnicity plays a part in the creation of a natural hairline and the process in which grafts are extracted from the donor zone.

While researchers tend to classify hair into four ethnic types: Asian hair, African American hair, Caucasian hair, and Middle Eastern hair – it’s important to note that there are differences in these groups. In general, African American hair has a slower growth pattern, is slightly denser and tends to twist around as it grows. The reason that African American hair grows much curlier than other ethnicities is because the hair follicle is in fact curled under the skin. This presents a particular challenge to the hair transplant surgeon because the extraction of the follicle needs to accommodate the curl under the skin. When performing follicular unit extraction (FUE), Beverly Hills & Orange County Hair Restoration surgeon, Dr. Yazdan, will use his own handmade punch so he can encircle the follicular unit and then follow the curve to safely extract the follicular units without transecting the grafts. Dr Yazdan is skilled in both sharp and dull punches he constructs by hand to minimize damage to curly haired follicles in order to decrease risk to the follicles.

Finding a surgeon who is highly skilled and educated on the differences will improve your results by a landslide. Here we’ll discuss several major aspects of an ethnic hair transplant.

African American Hair Loss Causes:

Though those of African American descent experience pattern baldness less than Caucasians, it is still the main cause of hair loss. Traction Alopecia is also considered a main cause in African American hair loss. In short, Traction Alopecia hair loss is self-inflicted from gradual hair thinning over many years of forceful pulling on the scalp. Examples of this include but not limited to: hair weaves, wigs, extensions, corn rows or tight braids etc.

African American Hairline Design:

Hairline shape and height is a principal factor in your overall hair transplant satisfaction. This allows the surgeon to judge the best position for the hairline. For example, African American patients have straighter hairlines which would not suit well if fashioned on Caucasians.

Adding to that, the angle of hair emergence is also different for every ethnic group. Some grow at a more perpendicular angle while others grow more parallel to the scalp. For instance, patients who are of African descent naturally have tightly curled hair which makes FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) more difficult to perform and requires an expert FUE surgeon. Hair conformation which shows whether hair is straight, wavy or curly is also a very critical part in how the surgeon will arrange the hair grafts, Dr. Yazdan is sensitive to this specific characteristic so that optimal appearance is achieved.

Hair Transplant Method for African Americans:

Each ethnicity requires slight variations in how hair is harvested and implanted in order to achieve the most ethnically-correct and natural-looking results. Therefore, Dr. Yazdan does not apply a blanket approach to his hair restoration technique and instead customizes his technique to specifically meet the needs of each patient’s unique attributes, including ethnicity. However, no matter what the variables, Dr. Yazdan’s technique for ethnic hair transplants includes designing hairlines that naturally fit each patient’s age, gender, stage of hair loss, head shape and facial features, in addition to their ethnicity. This will create the most visually appealing two-dimensional and three-dimensional results that will age well over time. As proper methods differ from patient to patient, Dr. Yazdan also goes to great lengths to harvest donor hair using his own surgical instruments with sharp, dull and trumpet punches performed with motorized and manual technique in a way that minimizes discomfort while maximizing harvest yield and quality; employing both strip harvesting and follicular unit extraction (FUE) methods as appropriate. In most cases, especially for males, Dr. Yazdan, favors the FUE procedure vs. the linear strip extraction (FUT) method to avoid visible scarring and to accommodate the shorter hair styles of African American males.

Is Scarring Likely in African American Hair Transplants?

One of the more significant concerns is keloid scarring and, in some cases, the tendency to form keloids seems to run in families. A keloid is a growth of extra scar tissue where the skin has healed after an injury. Although the cause is not known, keloids are equally common in women and men, yet people with darker skin are more likely to develop them.

If there is any history of keloid scarring, here at Modena Hair Restoration, Dr. Yazdan will typically perform a very small test session to assure that you do not have this healing characteristic. In general, because of the greater vascularity of the scalp many times patients with a history of keloid scarring on other parts of the body will not form keloid scars in the scalp. With Dr. Yazdan’s experience in various ethnic transplants – he understands how to approach the procedure while ensuring that there would be minimal or less visible scarring. To see how the skin responds to surgery, your surgeon can perform test runs to check the potential for scar formation.

Ethnicity also comes in to play when it comes to a person’s scalp thickness and elasticity. If your hair transplant surgeon proceeds with the FUT method and removes too wide of a strip – this can cause an obscene looking scar if not performed properly by your physician of choice.

Hair Transplant Recovery for African Americans:

Recovery following an ethnic hair transplant is no different than that following any other type of hair restoration surgery. Most patients can return to usual activities within 24 hours, although strenuous activity should be avoided for about a week to avoid any potential injury or increase the risk of bleeding. Most patients choose to take a few days off following surgery to fully recover, but it is not a requirement to do so.

Cost of an African American Hair Transplant:

The cost of an ethnic hair transplant will vary from patient to patient, based on several factors. These factors include the extent of hair loss, coverage area, hair density and other variables that may affect the number of grafts required as well as the method(s) used during the procedure. During an initial consultation with Dr. Yazdan, he will assess your hair transplant needs and will provide you with detailed information regarding how much your ethnic hair transplant costs based on your unique needs. The cost of a hair transplant is not specifically affected by differences in ethnicity, but rather by a selection of variables deemed necessary to meet your specific hair restoration needs.

African American Hair Restoration in Southern California, Las Vegas and Worldwide:

Although Dr. Yazdan performs ethnic hair transplants in Southern California & Las Vegas, his exceptional reputation – especially as it relates to ethnic hair restoration, draws patients from around the world. For patients traveling to California for hair transplant surgery, Dr. Yazdan offers a concierge service to help with travel and lodging accommodations.

Modena Hair Restoration Can Help You Find a Permanent Solution to Hair Thinning & Balding Concerns:

A reliable hair transplant surgeon should have the good call for judgment and sensitivity to the patient’s ethnicity. Training and skill are also key aspects for a hair transplant surgery to be successful for each patient coming from different ethnic backgrounds and Dr. Yazdan specializes in these unique hair restoration procedures.

Dr. Yazdan personally performs each ethnic hair transplant in Beverly Hills, Orange County and Las Vegas surgical clinics at his surgical center, utilizing a dedicated team throughout the entire process. He is involved in every aspect of the procedure in order to ensure the best possible ethnic hair restoration outcome and is committed to performing only one surgery per day in order to provide patients with the undivided attention they deserve.

For questions or to schedule a consultation, call one of our offices conveniently located in Irvine, Newport Beach, Beverly Hills and Las Vegas at 888-717-5273 or contact via our website at contact Modena Hair Link