It is estimated that by age 80, 80% of men will have experienced some form of genetic related hair loss. Natural aging also thins the hair and cause hair loss. Genetics and aging are among the most common causes of hair loss, and unlike medical conditions or medications, do not have an easy treatment or way to reverse it. While men are much more likely to experience genetic hair loss, women do also experience female pattern baldness and hair loss associated with aging and menopause. If treatment begins early enough, non-surgical or less invasive methods may suffice in restoring hair and preventing hair loss. When hair loss becomes more severe or quick, a procedure known as a minor scalp reduction may be a viable option to treat hair loss. Northwest Face & Body provides the best minor scalp reduction Bellevue and Kirkland offers.
A minor scalp reduction involves removing the portion of the scalp that no longer bears hair and repositioning the hair line to create a fuller head of hair. While it was the dominate surgical technique to treat hair loss in the mid and late 20th century, it has largely fallen out of favor in comparison to hair transplantation. However, there are instances where hair transplant cannot provide adequate results or is limited due to the sheer size of the balding area. This is where a scalp reduction can provide the better results. While severe hair loss is more frequently seen in and associated with men, some women may also be candidates for a minor scalp reduction. It is less common, but not completely unheard of if a woman sees her hairline retreat.
During this procedure, your plastic surgeon makes an incision that roughly follows your existing hair line. Based on usual patterns of hair loss, this is usually a rocket ship or letter 'M' shape. From here, the surgeon will remove that portion of the scalp and carefully stretch the hair bearing skin forward. This recreates a fuller, natural looking hairline. While in most cases, hair grows over the incision area, there is no guarantee. This procedure does come with a small risk of a visible, linear scar. This will be discussed in depth at the consultation and pre-operative appointments.
Although a scalp reduction is not usually the first resort for treating hair loss, it is often the only viable treatment for those with severe (but not total) loss. It is not as commonly performed anymore, but has become a tool during facial feminization and other gender affirming surgeries where the hair line may need repositioned. This is it's most often use today.
Technically, there are two types of scalp reduction: major and minor. Many will not differentiate between the two because they are essentially the same surgery. The only difference is that a major scalp reduction removes more skin and stretches the remaining scalp skin further. A minor scalp reduction can include just an inch or two (though often hair transplant would be preferred for this small of a space). Otherwise, beyond natural deviation in individual surgeries, there is almost no difference between a major scalp reduction and minor scalp reduction.
Yes, though not typically during the same surgery. It is not common for a person to undergo both of these surgeries in quick succession, if they undergo both at all. In some cases, following the scalp reduction, a hair transplant can help treat further thinning and loss. However, your plastic surgeon will likely recommend trying non-surgical hair restoration to maintain your hair and prevent future loss and thinning.
Good candidates for a scalp reduction are people who have a severely receded hair line that can not be adequately recovered with non-surgical methods or hair transplant. Patients cannot be completely bald and must still have a good portion of their scalp that is able to bear hair. Also, transgender patients wanting to alter the position of their hairline are also great candidates for a minor scalp reduction.
Northwest Face & Body is a premier plastic surgery clinic located in Kirkland, WA. Having served the Eastside for over thirty years, the plastic surgeons and providers at Northwest Face & Body customize every surgery, injection, and aesthetic skincare procedure to your specific needs and goals. Our surgeons have decades of experience and perform cosmetic and reconstructive surgery on a variety of patients from all around the world. To learn more and schedule a consultation, call us at 425-576-1700. You can also reach out online using Price Simulator, chat, and contact form.