- Aug. 28, 2011 - LAHORE, Pakistan --
Hair Transplant Surgery has come a long way in the past two decades as the new additions and refinements in this specific form of surgery for the balding heads, has taken it to new heights. Baldness in most men is caused by genetic predisposition. Most balding men carry the genes that can cause baldness starting in their 20's and 30's. While many choose to stay bald, most men have been shown to try one or the other form of therapy in their lifetime to stop the hair loss desperately before giving up in a hope for "magic potion".
Unfortunately, only a few medicines have been of some promise to treat this type of baldness with some success and for those who already have grown to a fully bald head, hair transplant remains the only scientifically proven and viable option to regrow hair.Many of those who want to regain their lost beauty of a full head of hair can not do so simply because of the cost involved in the hair transplant surgery. In most parts of the United States the cost of a single follicular unit transplant ranges between 3 to 8 US dollars. Get around 1500 grafts and you will end up paying a fortune. With the advent of "Mega Sessions" and "Super Mega Sessions" that involve transplanting more than 2000 to 4000 grafts in a single session, the cost becomes even more prohibitive for many deserving hair transplant candidates. The question is why hair transplants are so expensive. The answer lies in the fact that it is very tedious to perform a good hair transplant surgery that takes anywhere between 5 to 10 hours to perform depending on how many hair are being transplanted. At an average about 7 hours are required on the part of a team of 5 -7 people including the surgeon, nurses and hair transplant technicians who performs a very tiring task of literally dissecting every hair or a bunch of 2-5 hair with the help of a magnifying lense or a microscope and place them in tiny slots on the balding scalp. In short, the manpower required for a single surgery is the main reason for the expense. Also, to train the team to perform these intricate surgeries requires hours of hard work and literally months of refining their technique before putting them on a surgery team. Also, the overhead of running such practices takes a lot of money as the competition has compelled even the most competent physicians to advertise to attract new customers. Added to an already expensive business to run, that puts even more pressure on the pockets of the consumers indirectly. Therefore, the practices that advertise relatively less, often can offer surgeries at a relatively less cost. Similarly the surgeons with refined skill may cost a lot more than an ordinary or sub-par surgeon and thus the quality of the surgeons needs to be ensured in every case.
In recent years, many good surgeons have opted to open and expand their practices in those geographical locations where their services were not only needed, but also it was less expensive to run a practice owing to less expensive staff and lower overhead cost. Like in Pakistan, India and Thailand many exceptionally good hair transplant surgeons are offering the same high quality of hair transplants at a fraction of the cost paid in United States or Europe. For example a hair transplant that would cost around US$ 7000 in United States would only cost around US$ 1500 in Pakistan by the same surgeon who used to practice in America prior to returning home. So the lower cost is either due to a lesser overhead cost or less affordability of the local people. The caveat is the inconsistency in the level of proficiency of the surgeons in these countries. One may be an extraordinary Hair Transplant Surgeon, while the other may barely know how to hold a scalpel. So it is of utmost importance to check the credibility of the surgeon by searching their board certification by accreditation bodies like American Board of Dermatology or American Board of Plastic Surgery to ensure that the physician performing the hair transplant is well versed with the basic principles of medical and surgical aspects of hair growth as well as with the basic principles of surgery and has not resorted to this apparently lucrative field of medicine only for economic reasons.
Dr. Azim J. Khan is the only American trained skin specialist, laser & cosmetic surgeon in Pakistan with the unusual trio of accredited training in Internal Medicine, Dermatology and Cosmetic Surgery from the U.S., and is Board Certified by both American Board of Internal Medicine as well as American Board of Dermatology.