- Do not take aspirin or anti-inflammatory medications like Motrin, Advil, or Ibuprofen, for 14 days prior to surgery. These medications can thin the blood and cause bleeding during surgery. Many over the counter medications such as Alka-Seltzer, Bufferin, Excedrin, Empirin, etc., contain aspirin and should not be taken prior to surgery. If you are not sure, ask your doctor or pharmacist. As little as one aspirin can thin the blood for up to two weeks. (See list of additional medications to be avoided before surgery, at the end of these instructions).
- Do not drink alcohol for seven days prior to surgery. Alcohol can thin the blood and cause the procedure to be more difficult.
- If you smoke cigarettes, we advise you to stop smoking at least one month prior to your scheduled surgery. Many studies have shown that cigarette smoking impedes wound healing. In order to ensure the best healing and survival of the transplanted hair we suggest that our patients do not smoke. If you need medical assistance in smoking cessation, one of our doctors will be glad to help you.
- Do not take Vitamin E or B-complex vitamins for seven days prior to surgery. These vitamins can thin the blood slightly and cause the procedure to be more difficult.
- Avoid strenuous exercise and/or heavy lifting one week prior to surgery. There is some evidence that this can also thin the blood. Light exercise at about 50% of normal is okay before surgery.
- Wash your hair the morning of surgery. Do not use any hair products such as hair spray, mousse, gel, etc., the morning of surgery.
- Do not cut the hair on the back and side of your head before surgery. This will make it more difficult to hide the suture line. If possible, let your hair grow a little longer in the back (about 2-3 inches).
- Drink plenty of fluids and eat a light meal the night before, and the morning of surgery. This will help prevent dizziness and nausea.
- Do not drink caffeine the morning of surgery. You will be given something to relax during surgery. The caffeine can work against helping you relax. Decaffeinated drinks are acceptable.
- Wear comfortable, loose pants and a button down shirt the day of surgery. Do not wear a tee-shirt, as this is difficult to pull over the head after surgery.
- Bring a clean or new baseball cap, or similar type of hat to wear home after surgery. If the cap is not clean or new, there is a possibility that an infection may occur.
- You will be given a sedative to help you relax through the surgery. It will still be in your system after surgery, therefore, you must arrange for someone to pick you up and drive you home after surgery.
- Prior to surgery, we recommend you have some ice packs or a gel flexible cold pack on hand. The gel flexible cold pack is preferred. These are to be used on the forehead after surgery.
- We have a selection of music you can choose from the day of surgery. Feel free to bring your own music if you like; otherwise we provide a good variety of music you can listen during your surgery.
Tests to be conducted before Surgery
- Blood investigations were performed which included haemoglobin, total leukocyte count, differential leucocyte count, platelet count, bleeding time, clotting time, prothrombin time, activated plasma thromboplastin time, random blood sugar, anti-retrovirus 1 and 2 serology, Hepatitis B surface antigen and anti Hepatitis C were performed. The blood pressure and body weight were also recorded. A clearance for hair transplant surgery was taken from general physician and if all the tests were normal, then a written informed consent was taken for the surgery.
The following tests are conducted for the patients before the procedure:
- CBC (Complete Blood Count)
- BS (Blood Sugar) fasting/pp
- Bleeding Time (BT)
- Clotting Time (CT)
- Prothrombin Time (PT)
- HIV 1 and 2
- HBS Age (Hepatitis B)
- Day 1
- DO NOT WORRY much about the pain as mild pain is bound to happen
- Take recommended medicines as per prescription. Take adequate milk and/or food before taking food. Under NO CIRCUMSTANCES take medicines empty stomach.
- Watching TV and/or listening to soft music is recommended to help relax
- AVOID any kind of exertion or jerky movements to your head.
- Go early to bed and use soft pillow. While sleeping lay on your back OR side wards. DO NOT sleep with hand under your head.
- If you feel pain at any point of time after initial medication, repeat the pain killer as advised by doctor. TAKE MEDICINE WITH MILK.
- Day 2
- If locally available get the bandage removed from the doctor as per prior appointment OR please ask the doctor for instructions to follow.
- Take bath of your body EXCLUDING your head
- Take your medicines after breakfast
- Cleaning of grafts after removal of bandage – Moisture is necessary for grafts. Follow detailed instructions from doctor.
- Week 1 – DO NOT comb or rub the grafts. Rest of the area can be done with care
- Week 2
- MILD rubbing of new grafts is permissible. You can start using minoxidil lotion twice daily or as recommended by doctor. Grafts start to fall during this time but there is nothing to worry as these will re-grow in 3-4 months of time.
- About Donor Area – This needs to be taken care by cleaning and spray as good as its done for the new graft area. After this put the ointment as recommended by your doctor. The stitches will gently get loosened in 7-10 days and fall apart.
- Exercise – Recommended walking/mild jogging for at least 2 weeks. NO neck stretch exercises to be done during this time.
Post Operative Swelling : There are few cases where post-operative swelling may occur. This could be visible towards the fore head and be unto 4-5 days. In such cases you are advised to apply ice cubes by putting them in a piece of cloth. Apply these ice cubes 2-3 minutes at least 4-5 times a day. Our doctors and their team are available for follow up discussions, if any.
DO REMEMBER to take the contact details of your doctor before you leave the clinic.