Scalp Micropigmentation FAQ

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When is Scalp Micropigmentation used as an alternative to surgery?
SMP may be a surgical alternative to a candidate that lacks availability of healthy hair in donor areas of adequate density or has Alopecia Universalis. It may be recommended to a patient who is thinning but is not yet ready for surgery. SMP is a Good alternative for women with make-up allergies (although the procedure is designed to enhance features, not replace make-up altogether). TP is very safe before or after surgery within the recommended timeframe.
Is SMP permanent?

SMP is not permanent and will fade in time. Unlike regular tattoos, the color does not change and will dissipate evenly.

How soon after surgery can SMP be performed?

After surgery, your doctor will recommend when you are ready for SMP, but the average patient would wait approx. 6 months.

Why would you need SMP after surgery?

SMP is a great way to cover any scar tissue as well as create a look of density by pigmenting the scalp in sparse areas.

Why would you need SMP before surgery?

If you are in the early stages of hair loss and are trying alternative methods like Propecia and/or Laser Light Therapy and want to simulate density, this is a good method to keep your loss less noticeable. As with all hair loss treatment options, early intervention is key and working with a hair restoration specialist is critical.

Can all scars be treated?

No. There are 5 types of scars: Flat, Raised, Concave, Keloid, and Stretched.

Most can be treated. Keloid scars cannot be treated unless they are corrected successfully by a surgeon first with the scar being reclassified into another category. Then SMP may be performed. Concave or depressed scars should be tested first, because they may contain liquid underneath the surface which may cause the pigment to spread. *All scars must be completely healed and be neutral, not red in color.

How many treatments does SMP require?

A normal treatment of SMP should be performed in two sessions. The first session is full coverage with the second session refilling any gaps, complementing and touching up if needed. The first two should be scheduled two days in a row or as close as possible.

How long does the first session take?

Depending on the size of the area being treated, a full session (full coverage) would average approximately 3 to 4 hours. A scar will take 30 minutes to an hour, depending upon the length of the scar as well as the follicle or stroke being requested. All procedures are customized to the individual patient and can be better determined in the consult.

How long does the second session take?

Approximately half the amount of time as the first session.

How long does it take to perform a touch up?

Any touch up session obviously depends on the coverage needed, but each session should decrease in time.

Does the color change over time?

The color is specially formulated and stabilized. All hues will dissipate at the same rate, therefore maintaining the intended color. One consideration for the prospective patient, who utilizes Scalp Micropigmentation to camouflage the linear scar from Strip Harvest FUT procedures, is the graying of that patient’s hair.

How much downtime is expected?

Very little recovery or down time is required. The majority of patients may resume most of their normal activities within 24 hours.

How long does SMP last?

Duration of the treatment depends on these factors:

  • Power Phagocytosis – Ability possessed by different cells in the body to ingest foreign materials and to destroy them.
  • Age of the Patient – The pigments are inoculated in the superficial layers of the dermis: with the natural cell turnover they tend to be slowly expelled. A young patient possesses a regenerative capacity cellular definitely higher than an adult, and then the treatment tends to lose before its effectiveness.
  • Lifestyle
  • Frequency of Cleansing
  • Cleansing Products
  • Sporting Activities – for the swimming enthusiasts, who expose their skin regularly to chlorine , a strong sterilization and bleaching agent which speeds up the natural cell renewal, SMP may not be the best option.
  • Exposure to Sun Rays – Direct exposure to sunlight may accelerate the disappearance of the treatment as it increases the body’s natural process of phagocytosis.