Why Is There Inflammation After Hair Grafting?

Why Is There Inflammation After Hair Grafting

Hair restoration procedures are a popular option for individuals seeking to regrow hair in areas where it has been lost or thinned. These procedures, which can include techniques such as Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) or Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT), are minimally invasive and generally easy on the body. However, it is important to note that they are still considered surgical procedures and carry certain risks, such as swelling.

Swelling is a common side effect of hair transplantation and can occur in various areas of the scalp, forehead, and eyes. This swelling usually occurs within a few days following the procedure and can be surprising to some individuals. While it is not harmful to one’s health, it can cause discomfort and affect one’s appearance.

The cause of swelling following hair transplantation can vary, but it is important to note that it is related to the procedure itself. This is because hair transplantation involves making small incisions or punctures in the scalp, which can cause some inflammation and fluid buildup.

Fortunately, there are several precautions individuals can take to reduce swelling and speed up their recovery time. Experts suggest avoiding strenuous activity for at least a few days following the procedure, as well as avoiding hot showers and using ice packs to reduce swelling. Additionally, it is recommended that individuals elevate their head when sleeping to further reduce swelling.

The Main Reasons For Swelling Post Hair Transplantation

Why Is There Inflammation After Hair Grafting

Swelling is a common occurrence after hair transplant surgery, and it can be caused by several factors. Understanding the causes of swelling can help patients prepare for the healing process and take steps to minimize its impact.


One of the primary causes of swelling after hair transplant surgery is the serum injected into the scalp during the procedure. This serum creates a space between the scalp and skull, which makes it easier to transplant hair follicles and increases the chances of healthy transplanted hair. However, this serum cannot be immediately removed after the procedure, which may result in oedema and scalp swelling depending on the amount injected. The amount of serum injected depends on the size of the head and the area to be transplanted, meaning that the level of swelling varies from person to person.

The position of the head can also affect the amount of swelling after hair transplant surgery. When a patient bends their head forward during the first few days after surgery, gravity forces the serum down the scalp and into the eye areas, resulting in increased swelling. Hair transplant specialists instruct their patients not to bend their heads forward during this time to prevent swelling from extending to the temples.

Hair Transplantation

Another cause of swelling after hair transplant surgery is the micro-channels created in the scalp during the procedure. While the process may seem simple, it is still a surgical procedure that requires skill and precision. The channels created in the scalp are considered a small trauma, and the body will work hard to speed up their healing. The body’s response to this trauma can cause a small amount of swelling in the affected area.


The drugs used for anesthesia during hair transplantation can also contribute to swelling, with varying degrees depending on the amount and type of drugs used. Allergic reactions and oedema caused by the drugs may also play a role in inflammation.

To minimize swelling after hair transplant surgery, patients should follow their surgeon’s post-operative instructions carefully. These may include avoiding activities that may cause swelling, such as bending the head forward or strenuous exercise, and taking medication as prescribed to manage pain and inflammation. Elevating the head while sleeping and using cold compresses on the affected area can also help to reduce swelling.

In conclusion, swelling after hair transplant surgery is a common occurrence that can be caused by several factors, including the serum injected into the scalp, the micro-channels created during the procedure, and anesthesia. By understanding the causes of swelling and taking steps to minimize its impact, patients can have a smoother and more comfortable recovery after hair transplant surgery.

How Long Does Swelling Last After Hair Transplantation?

Swelling is a common occurrence after hair transplant surgery, and while it cannot be completely avoided, it is important to understand when it typically subsides. The amount of time it takes for swelling to go away varies from person to person and depends on factors such as overall health and post-operative care. Generally, most people can expect swelling to subside within 3 to 5 days after hair transplantation.

However, if swelling persists beyond this time frame or is accompanied by other symptoms such as pain, rashes, or high fever on the scalp, it is important to seek medical attention from your hair transplant surgeon immediately. It is important to monitor the healing process closely and follow your surgeon’s instructions carefully to ensure a smooth and successful recovery.

How Can The Swelling Be Prevented?

After a hair transplant surgery, swelling can occur 2-3 days after the procedure and typically lasts for several days. If the recipient area is near the front of the scalp, lidocaine may flow downward under the skin, leading to swelling in the forehead, eye area, and lower parts of the face. This can cause discomfort and even affect the patient’s vision. To prevent or minimize swelling, doctors may recommend a low dose steroid tablet if there are no contraindications.

Additionally, it’s crucial to massage the forehead frequently for 3-4 days after surgery using a light cream or moisturizer to avoid tugging on the delicate facial skin. By massaging the forehead, the lidocaine can be pushed to the sides, reducing the oedema, and preventing eye swelling. Therefore, following these instructions can help patients minimize the swelling and discomfort associated with hair transplantation surgery. If swelling persists or other concerning symptoms occur, it is advisable to contact the hair transplant surgeon as soon as possible.

How Can Inflammation Be Treated?

Inflammation is a common side effect after a hair graft procedure. The following are some ways to treat inflammation after a hair graft:


  • Apply a cold compress
  • Take anti-inflammatory medications
  • Elevate the head
  • Avoid strenuous activities
  • Avoid alcohol and smoking
  • Follow the aftercare instructions provided by the surgeon

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