Background: Transplanted hair follicles suffer from various injuries, which are difficult to prevent. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) was reported to be an excellent procedure to promote capillary regeneration and reduce ischemia-reperfusion injury.
Aim: To evaluate the clinical efficacy of HBOT as an adjuvant therapy for hair transplantation surgery.
Methods: Thirty-four patients with II-IV alopecia were divided into the control group and HBOT group randomly. The control group was treated with routine FUE procedure, while HBOT group combined with HBOT. Patients were treated with 100% oxygen under 2.0 atmospheres absolute pressure for 60 minutes through a facemask during HBOT and take the therapy daily for 7 days continuously after operation. Satisfaction and clinical improvement were evaluated at the fourth week and the sixth month postoperatively.
Results: Itching and folliculitis were significantly decreased in HBOT group (11.8% vs 35.3%). In addition, HBOT resulted in a lower postoperative shedding rate (27.6 ± 2.6% vs 69.1 ± 2.4%); nevertheless, the survival rate at 9 months showed no significant difference between HBOT (96.9 ± 0.5%) and control (93.8 ± 0.6%). The early postoperative satisfaction in control group was much lower than HBOT group (52.9% vs 88.2%), whereas all patients showed satisfaction with the final result.
Conclusion: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is able to minimize the postsurgical follicle shedding and lead to less folliculitis and itching, which provides evidence for HBOT to act as an adjuvant therapy for hair transplantation surgery.
Keywords: alopecia; hair transplantation; hyperbaric oxygen therapy.
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