Eyelash transplants were first developed to help individuals whom suffered from trauma and accidents that resulted in permanent damage to their eyelashes. For example, individuals who are victims of burns can be left with no eyelashes, which will have an influence on the symmetry of their face and their self confidence. The first transplant was administered 17 years ago in San Paulo, Brazil. When the news of eyelash transplants spread, it quickly increased in popularity among surgeons.
With time, plastic surgeons started to realize that eyelash transplants can also be administered for aesthetically enhancing an individual’s appearance. This can be an ideal treatment for those who have lost a considerable amount of eyelashes due to wearing falfse eyelashes, as the glue from false eyelashes can pull out natural hair follicles. There are many individuals who wonder if the procedure is permanent. The results of an eyelash transplant are permanent if an individual follows the care that is advised by his or her plastic surgeon.
Who are Ideal Candidates for an Eyelash Transplant?
An individual’s facial symmetry is greatly influenced by his or her eyelashes. Many individuals choose to get eyelash transplants because it will increase their self esteem. Eyelash transplant surgery can be administered for many reasons:
Those who have suffered from permanent injury and scarring due to physical trauma, which could include industrial accidents, automobile collisions, chemical burns, eyelid tattoos, and false lashes, may benefit from an eyelash transplant. In addition, those who have practiced beauty routines improperly, such as curling eyelashes with a defective tool, could also be ideal candidates if they have experienced severe follicle damage.
If an individual has surgery administered for a tumor or injury of the eyelid that resulted in scar tissue and eyelash follicle damage, the procedure may be a suitable way to restore eyelashes.
Those who have trichotillomania, which is a disorder where an individual will feel compelled to pull their hair out, may also be ideal candidates for the procedure. However, it is typically recommended that an individual with this condition receives treatment for it before they have eyelash transplant surgery.
Eyelash transplants may also be a suitable treatment option for individuals whom have lost their eyelashes during radiation or chemotherapy.
Eyelash Transplant Consultation
During your eyelash transplant consultation, a plastic surgeon will first determine if your follicles are damaged to an extent that is so significant is warrants the procedure. It is also important to mention that eyelash transplants are only administered on the upper eyelid, as the lower lid does not produce effective results. Those with follicle damage on their lower eyelid may want to try an FDA approved eyelash growth treatment.
At your consultation, a plastic surgeon will examine your eyelid to see if there are enough gaps in the eyelid to transplant hair follicles, which are usually harvested from the back of the head. However, if the eyelid has experienced severe damage, the procedure will not be able to be carried out until an ophthalmic or plastic surgeon restructures the eyelid.
In addition, you should also be able to close your eyes completely to be considered an ideal candidate for the procedure. Those who are not able to close their eyes completely, which is typically caused by physical trauma, will not be able to have the procedure administered because the donor eyelashes could result in permanent damage to the eyes.
Many plastic surgeons perform the procedure on females who have caused permanent damage to their eyelids from false eyelashes. These individuals need to have enough healthy eyelid to ensure that the donor eyelashes can be transplanted correctly. When an individual seeks the procedure solely for aesthetic reasons, there needs to significant damage that Latisse or other lash serums are not able to treat. Although false lashes can leave an individual with sparse lashes, an individual will need to have an estimated 1-2 mm of space in the eyelid for a plastic surgeon to transplant the donor follicles safely and properly.
What is the Procedure Like?
The plastic surgeon will remove a section of donor hair from the patient. This is typically on the scalp at the back of the head, which is because hair follicles tend to be stronger and longer in this area. The longer hairs make it easier for a plastic surgeon to thread them to the eyelid. The donor area will be numbed with a local anesthetic, and when the plastic surgeon has removed the hair, he or she will quickly close the area with stitches. It doesn’t take long to harvest the hair follicles, and many individuals report that there isn’t any pain in the eyelid area during or after the procedure. There may be minimal scarring where the donor hair was collected, but the scar is only visible on those with short hair.
It will typically take an individual three to five days to recover from an eyelash transplant, and it is normal for slight swelling and minor bruising to show up around the eyelid. A plastic surgeon may recommend that you avoid washing your face for a few days following the procedure, which allows the donor follicles to settle into place. Typically, it will take about six months for the new, healthy eyelashes to reach their full length.
It is important that you follow the post-operative instructions from your plastic surgeon. There is a chance of infection if an individual doesn’t maintain proper post-operative care. If an infection does arise, it can easily be treated with antibiotics. Because the donor hair is harvested from the scalp, it will grow rapidly. You should trim your new eyelashes every week and curl them as well, which will give the donor lashes the chance to blend with your natural eyelashes.
If you want to see if you are an ideal candidate for eyelash transplants, contact Dr. Jeffrey Epstein, MD, FACS. Dr. Epstein has performed many successful eyelash transplantations in Miami on both men and women. Find out more about him by visiting his website at www.eyebrowtransplantation.com.