Should I worry about post-op pimples?

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Some patients notice pimples in the recipient area in the weeks and months following their hair restoration procedure.

Some worry that pimples can harm the grafts, so let’s start by saying that they don’t usually affect the final results.

For the grafted area, we recommend a warm towel compress and occasionally an oral antibiotic. Try to avoid squeezing them because this can spread bacteria and cause more pimples.

Larger or painful pimples can be punctured with a sterilized needle by your doctor to release the pressure.

As to why this happens, there are several reasons:

  • Ingrowing hairs. As the grafts begin to grow, at first they might struggle to break through the surface of the skin. The hair will eventually free itself, but until then the follicle might become slightly inflamed and appear like a small cyst.
  • Acne. In some cases the pimples might simply be good old-fashioned acne, especially in the first few weeks when the recipient area is healing and some crusting remains. The skin debris can block pores which causes the pimples.
  • Folliculitis. In some instances mild infection can occur leading to folliculitis. This is an inflammatory condition similar to acne that can affect areas that experience friction, commonly the neck (due to shaving) or groin.
Profile photo of Dr. Pires

About Dr. Pires

Dr. Pires is a hair restoration surgeon at Rahal. He is a graduate of McGill University Medical School and active member of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons. He specializes in all follicular unit transplants.

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