Author Bio: Dr. Sanusi Umar MD is the author of this article.
It is actually quite normal to notice pimples after a hair transplant. However, these are actually not the same as acne. In the case of common or androgenic acne, dirt or skin cell debris (from the pore lining) blocks the skin pore opening, causing a buildup of oil beneath the surface.
Reasons Why Pimples After a Hair Transplant May Form
In this video, Dr. Umar explains that bumps after a hair transplant develop as a result of two issues in the grafted area:
- Folliculitis, or inflammation of the hair follicle
- Ingrown hair formation
Hair Transplant Acne at the Recipient Area
At about 3 months following a hair transplant surgery, new hair shafts will start to grow and emerge upwards. When they come in contact with the skin above, the hair can trigger irritation and inflammation. The swelling forms what looks like pimples after a hair transplant. In a way, bumps after a hair transplant is actually a very positive sign, indicating that new growth is on it’s way.
On the other hand, bumps may form if the sebaceous glands which are attached to the hair follicle continue to release oil, producing cysts.
Ingrown Hair After a Hair Transplant
Resistance from the skin may cause the hair to curl downward. And this forms an ingrown hair. The ingrown hair may cause an inflammation reaction in the skin or the hair follicle. This is another way pimples after a hair transplant can form.
Never Pop Hair Transplant Pimples
One or two bumps should resolve on their own. If you are noticing a much larger number of pimples after a hair transplant, don’t try to pop them. This can result in further inflammation and greater complications. Instead, report the issue to your surgeon.
Your hair transplant doctor may prescribe medication to reduce the inflammation. Or he or she may surgically remove them.
Ultimately the right treatment will be able to target the specific cause responsible for the formation of the hair transplant acne, particularly at the recipient area.
Not Everyone Will See Bumps After a Hair Transplant Procedure
The formation of small pimple-like structures is a rather common occurrence. But not all patients will experience this. In fact, if you don’t see bumps forming by about the third month, this doesn’t mean that your hair is failing to grow!
Although new signs of growth after a hair restoration surgery typically emerge by the third or fourth month, some people may notice the formation of new hair as late as 9 to 12 months after their procedure.
If you are interested in speaking to Dr. Umar about undergoing a hair restoration surgery, sign up for a complimentary consultation.