What can you do if you have Lichen Planopilaris and Scarring Alopecia?
Lichen Planopilaris is a scarring type of hair loss and has symptoms such as white atrophic areas that do not allow hair growth.
The question really becomes what can be done to surgically improve this or to get hair back in this area? There are many things that can be done, one thing being if the patient is inclined to do is excise or cut out the scar, pull it together and do a surgical procedure and bring both hair barring areas back together.
In other situations, Dr. Mejia utilizes Follicular Unit Excision or Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) procedures where donor hair is removed from the back of the scalp and is transplanted into the scarring area. Hair follicles can grow in scars to restore the area. With certain types of hair loss conditions that are autoimmune, like Lichen Planopilaris or lupus hair transplanting into atrophic areas can be considered problematic in the sense that Dr.Mejia has to advise patients that the results may not be one hundred percent successful and the reason is that when he has a diagnosis of an inflammatory, autoimmune condition that is damaging the hair follicles, any transplanted hairs that are put into the atrophic areas can potentially also be involved with the same issue.
When you’re transplanting into scars you have to understand what the pathology is and what the diagnosis is because while it can be done many times the grafts may not grow completely or they may grow fine for several years only to get the disease reactivated and when you have the disease reactivated into the area the transplanted hairs may be affected, damaged and lost similar to what was lost, to begin with.
To answer the question, “can you transplant into scars?” The answer is yes you can, but it depends on what type of scar you’re transplanting into and if you’re transplanting into disease processes that are inflammatory in nature, it should be under the direct follow-up and close supervision of a clinical dermatologist specializing in hair transplantation surgery.