Do Women Have Hair Transplants?

Hair loss can affect both men and women, and is one of the most common conditions that affect older adults.

In fact, studies show that in the UK, up to 70% of men by the age of 70 and 50% of women by the age of 50 can be affected. Although this may seem like quite a high number, the amount of hair transplants performed on women is significantly lower than with men. 

Why is this?

In many cases, female hair loss is not as noticeable as male hair loss due to the difference in formation. Pattern baldness (as it’s often referred to) experienced by both males and females in late adulthood is often due to genetics and hormonal changes, and is known as androgenic alopecia. The age at which this ageing-related concern can begin varies from person to person, and may develop differently. Typically, men will notice their hair gradually receding from the front of the head, and / or thinning on the top.

Whereas women will often experience a thinning around the crown, front and middle of the head. The key word here is ‘thinning’ as it’s more common for a man to go ‘bald’ from pattern hair loss than a woman, which many people will also perceive to be more acceptable. Women are more likely to retain the hair at the front of their head, which makes thinning hair / hair loss less conspicuous.

Whether baldness or significant thinning develops, both males and females can feel aesthetically concerned. At AHI Clinic in South Woodford, we consider all forms of hair loss in both men and women. Our consultation process is essential for exploring the possible cause of thinning hair / hair loss, and determines whether a patient is a good candidate for a hair transplant procedure.

At our clinic, we do find that a smaller percentage of our hair transplant patients are women, which is often due to the amount of healthy donor hair. Pattern baldness in men will most often affect the top of the head, leaving the sides and back relatively full and suitable for transplantation. As women tend to experience more thinning, overall, this can mean the hair and follicles are considered too unstable for use as donor grafts. 

Around 2-5% of female patients with thinning hair / hair loss are found to be suitable for a hair transplant. These patients’ concerns are not usually hormone related, like in androgenic alopecia, but have other causes such as: 

  • Traction alopecia – when the hair is frequently pulled back, weakening the hair and follicles around the hairline
  • Trauma – such as from burns
  • Pattern baldness that is not affecting the back of the head
  • Scarring from cosmetic surgery

Due to the nature of thinning hair / hair loss in women, it’s more likely that hair restoration medication will have a positive result and we’ll usually explore this option first. A hair transplant for a woman is carried out in much the same way as it is for a man through the following stages:

  • Donor grafts are selected from a part of the head where hair growth is healthier and fuller – usually at the back – and removed using a motorised punch instrument
  • The grafts are stored in Hypertermasol solution mixed with ATP
  • Implantation sites are created, following the natural direction of the patient’s hair
  • Donor grafts are prepared
  • Hairs are implanted into the tiny holes

We often find the goal for female hair transplants is slightly different than with men, requiring a larger area to be addressed. We may also ask that our female patients cut or partially shave longer hair, as this can make the procedure more tricky to perform. 

AHI Clinic welcomes both men and women to their clinic and each patient is treated individually. Personalised treatment plans are devised according to the patient’s specific concerns, suggesting the most suitable treatment option. 

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