How does it work?
It’s time to jettison your bald patch. Having scalp reduction surgery involves cutting away the area of hairless skin and stretching the surrounding scalp over to cover the area.
Before your crop circle can be whisked away, the part of your scalp that will be covering it has to be stretched first. This is done by inserting a small device under the skin which is slowly filled with salt water, like a balloon, over a period of a couple of weeks. The size and position of the balloon depends on the direction your hair grows and how big your bald patch is – it’s positioned to give the most natural finished effect.
Once your scalp has adjusted enough to give the surgeon a good area of hair-growing skin to work with, the balloon device will be taken out and the bald area of your scalp will be cut away. The area of skin that has been stretched is pulled over the part where your bald patch once was and sewn shut.
The whole operation is done under local anaesthetic and usually takes between 1 to 3 hours. It’s important to give your scalp enough time to heal - so resist the temptation to preen your new do by brushing or washing for a week following surgery. Other than that, you should be able to resume your normal routine just a couple of days after treatment, though it might be an idea to put off your five-a-side in the park until you have completely healed, at least 2-3 weeks later.
Is it for me?
If you have a “well-defined” bald patch – in other words, a patch that has a distinct edge to it, with healthy hair surrounding it – you’re an ideal candidate for scalp reduction. The smaller the bald patch the easier the treatment and the more natural the result (and it will take less time to stretch the surrounding skin). If you are still balding, it’s not ideal to have a scalp reduction because further balding might expose the surgery scar.
Scalp reduction is not just for men, women suffering with permanent, patch hair loss or even people with moderate scalp injuries such as burns can also benefit from the treatment – removing the scar tissue and leaving only healthy, hair-growing skin. Bye-bye, bald spots.