Cost is one of the biggest deciding factors for many Sydney residents when considering hair transplant surgery. It’s not hard to see why–even the simplest transplants can cause thousands of dollars. The price tag is enough to give anyone pause and wonder why this procedure can get so staggeringly expensive.
The fast answer is this–a hair transplant, although no open heart surgery, is still a surgical procedure done only by qualified doctors. Many factors come into play when computing for the cost. Below are the 6 items that get charged to your hair transplant bill.
1. Consultation Fee
One of the first things that you’ll be shelling out money for is the consultation fee. The average consultation fee in Sydney costs an average of AUD$150. This is how much you pay to be able to ascertain if the surgeon is the right fit for your needs, and to get a rough average for the cost of the whole procedure. In most clinics, your consultation fee will be fully refundable if you proceed with the surgery.
2. Size of the Area that Requires Treatment
Hair loss is different for each and every person, no matter how similar it may look on the surface. The cost between a 500 and a 1000-graft job is big because the difference is also large. The effect you want to achieve also changes the plan you’ll need. Some want a full mane of thick hair, while others may just want enough to cover a bald spot. Obviously, the more grafts you need, the more you’ll pay.
Through personal consultation, a surgeon can properly assess the problem and the extent of work that needs to be done. Run the opposite direction of clinics who promise cookie-cutter treatment plans. Your surgeon should be able to explain the cost by the amount of work that needs to be done.
3. Session Type
Some surgeons will perform “megasessions”, which is a hair transplant where 3,000 to 5,000 grafts are used. It requires enormous amounts of time, quality control, and organization ability. This approximately takes about 12 hours to perform. Megasessions are made possible through recent improvements in the hair transplant field.
The advantages of megasessions include:
- Fewer surgeries, no need to set aside more than 1 sick day from work
- Less scarring on the back of the head
- Results become noticeable faster
- Overall cheaper for the patient
But despite megasessions’ appealing advantages, only a few surgeons are able to perform it successfully.
Most doctors will require multiple sessions for your hair transplant surgery. Hair transplant surgery is performed by harvesting hair from donor areas and transplanting them to recipient sites. This is a painstaking process that requires care and skill. A rushed hair transplant can lead to unnatural looking hair or the transplanted hairs failing completely.
If the bald areas are not covered completely in one session, the surgeon will ask the patient to return. Individuals with advanced hair loss are more likely to require several grafts and sessions.
4. Technique Used
There are two techniques used in hair transplant surgery, the FUT (Follicular Unit Transplantation) and FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction).
FUT, or the strip method, is the traditional approach in hair transplant surgery. It involves creating an incision across the back of the scalp to remove a strip of skin which contains the donor grafts. The extraction process of the hair grafts are done microscopically, and so allows your surgeon better control and precision, decreasing the need to resection the transplant. The cost per graft using FUT is around AUD$7 for the first 500 grafts, but can go down to AUD$5.50 AUD per graft if more is needed.
FUE involves directly removing donor grafts from their original location using a specialized tool. On average, FUE costs more than FUT, but can be more appealing to some because the process doesn’t leave scarring at the back of your head. The method is also more challenging and has a higher risk of resection. Expect to pay around AUD$12 to AUD$18 per graft.
If you opt for a Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE), then you can expect several sessions to achieve the results you want. The younger you are, the more sessions you may need to offset the progressive nature of hair loss. The surgeon will discuss this with you in detail during your consultation.
5. Surgeon’s Fee
A surgeon’s professional fee will vary depending on the location of his clinic. Reputation also plays a role. For those reasons, the professional fee for surgeons in Sydney may differ from that in Adelaide or Melbourne.
Surgeries are delicate and life-changing. Hair transplant surgeons have to make sure grafts survive and grow naturally, while lessening scarring and avoiding costly resections. The skill level required to perform the procedure–and perform it well–will not come cheap. The brightest red flag you should look out for is someone who offers transplants at a price significantly lower than other clinics. For your safety and satisfaction, it’s always best to assume that you get what you pay for.
On the other hand, just because a surgeon charges premium doesn’t automatically mean that they offer quality results. Always let a doctor’s portfolio, their aesthetic, patient reviews, and reputation guide your decisions.
6. Anaesthesiologist and Anaesthesia Fees
Typically, anaesthesia fees fall somewhere between how much a hospital charges and a surgeon’s fees. Anaesthesiologists are paid similarly or more than the surgeon per case.
The type of anaesthesia you need will affect cost and is usually decided by the procedure you need. Generally, hair transplants are done under local anaesthesia, which is directly injected into the surgery site and numbs nerves in and around it. Some surgeons may also place patients under mild sedation. Unlike general anaesthesia, local anaesthesia allows a patient to go home immediately after surgery. It also has fewer side effects.
A Quick Reminder
You can find out the cost of a hair transplant surgery in Sydney through the ISHRS (International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery) website, as well as clinics near you. The ISHRS, besides helping you match with the right surgeon, also follow and factor in recent technologies and advances in the hair transplant industry.
If you have any further questions about where your money gets transplanted during hair transplant procedures, you can ask Dr. Daood of the Sydney Hair Transplant Clinic.
Book your Private Consultation
If you are considering FUE or FUT Hair Transplant surgery please contact us for further information on pricing and procedural information.
To book a private consultation today with Dr. Daood call 1300 656 236.