Is it Appropriate for a Doctor to Bring in Technicians to Do Hair Transplants?
Hair transplants involve detailed work requiring skill and precision. Because of the multiple steps in a procedure, all surgeons work with technicians to complete the surgery. Is it the best practice however for these technicians to be “rented” on a per case basis, as is done by many surgeon who usually do not specialize in hair transplants.
Who Performs the Hair Transplant Procedure?
Ask your hair transplant doctor if he or she and or other licensed assistants will be doing the graft extraction and recipient site formation portions of your procedure, which are the most critical. You may be able to find this information online in an “About Us” or “About Our Team” section on the website of the practice.
The “best practices” guidelines by the ISHRS (International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery), the world’s largest organization of hair transplant physicians, dictate that only licensed professionals – meaning the doctor and or a Physician’s Assistant (PA) or Nurse Practitioner (ARNP)- should perform graft extractions and recipient site formation. In fact, in most of the US, it is the LAW that only licensed personally perform these steps.
Because technicians are usually required to efficiently perform a transplant, such as graft preparation and graft planting, find out how long the doctor has been working with his or her team and how many procedures they’ve performed together.
Beware of Traveling Technicians
Some hair transplant surgeons work with traveling, per diem technicians. Although they should be just as skilled as dedicated team members, bouncing from practice to practice makes it difficult for the technician to become familiar with how any one surgeon works.
Doctors also can’t develop strong relationships with traveling technicians, and the resulting lack of dedication and of pride in working together as a team can result in a less than ideal work effort and therefore and may compromise the quality or outcome of the procedure.
For best results, look for a hair transplant surgeon, like Dr. Epstein, who only works with his own dedicated team of qualified technicians, along with two ARNPs.
How to Choose a Hair Transplant Team
As long as both the surgeon and his or her team have the proper credentials and specialize in hair transplants, you can feel confident in choosing a practice where technicians assist during the procedure.
To find the right team:
- Read online reviews
- Inquire about everyone’s qualifications
- Ask to see before and after pictures of previous patients
- Make sure you understand the hair transplant method they use
Don’t be shy about requesting to see the credentials of the surgeon and any assisting technicians. As the patient, you’re entitled to as much information as you need to be comfortable with the surgeon and team who will perform your surgery.