James Nesbitt: The Desolation of Hair Loss
Actors, politicians and sports figures live their life in public. Every word they utter and every night they spend on the town is endlessly analysed by our voracious modern media. If they hold hands with someone it becomes tabloid fodder. If they utter an off-colour remark apologies are demanded and if they’re going bald well, there’s no place to hide. Just ask James Nesbitt.
James Nesbitt spends his life in front of the camera. The native of Northern Ireland first made a name for himself on the award winning TV series “Cold Feet” and has gone on to have an extremely successful career that includes feature roles in some of the biggest films of the 21st century, including all three films in Peter Jackson’s “Hobbit” trilogy. But while fame and fortune have smiled on Nesbitt the hair gods have been less kind.
A Major Concern
As his mane thinned and receded over the past 20 years Nesbitt remained publicly quiet on the issue, preferring to deal with the matter privately through a series of hairdos that drew attention away from his thinning locks and down toward his face. But that strategy only works for so long and by 2013 Nesbitt was facing, what he felt, was a kind of personal and professional abyss. “Several years ago” he’s now quoted as saying “I began losing my hair and… it was a major concern to me…” He adds “I’m in the public eye a lot and I really felt that my hair loss could affect my career prospects.”
At that point he took the decision to do something about his condition because “‘it’s horrible going bald. Anyone who says it isn’t is lying.” After “many agonies” he underwent what is believed to have been an FUT or Follicular Unit Transplantation. The FUT is one of several hair transplantation methods available through Hair Transplant Glasgow, to provide men with permanent solutions to the problem of hair loss.
How the FUT Works to Restore Your Hair
While James hasn’t come out and stated for the record exactly which procedure he underwent hair restoration professionals believe it was an FUT as mentioned above. The FUT involves the removal of a strip of tissue from the back of the head and the harvesting of individual donor hairs from this strip. Those donor follicles are then individually transplanted to the affected areas. FUT has become the hair transplant of choice for many in the more advanced stages of hair loss although it works equally well for everyone.
As you can see in the before and after photos to the left James’ FUT has been a smashing success and he’s feeling more confident and upbeat than ever. And while his “Cold Feet” co-stars make light of his choice to deal with his hair loss they’ve all been wonderfully supportive as well.
Between 2,000 and 4,500 follicles are transplanted during a typical FUT session with the exact number depending on the severity of the person’s hair loss. This is a higher number than you’ll hear for other techniques because, with an FUT, several follicles are moved at the same time. As with a Follicular Unit Extraction or FUE however, the price per graft will go down as the number of grafts increases. The exact cost for such a procedure is usually worked out between patient and doctor during consultations but you might expect to pay somewhere in the neighbourhood of £12,000-£13,000 for a full 4,500 grafts.
Will Follicular Unit Transplantation Work for Me?
The majority of men will experience hair loss of some sort by the time they’re in their mid-30s but not all of them will require hair transplantation procedures. Most of the time hair loss is minimal and not a cause for concern. For those who’ve been afflicted with the scourge of pattern baldness, however, an FUT or FUE while perhaps not a ‘life saver’ can certainly be a career saver and/or confidence saver.
So who is eligible for an FUE? FUEs are a relatively new procedure and typically (though not always) reserved for those who are experiencing more advanced hair loss. If hair growth on the back and sides of your head is normal and your scalp is free of conditions like seborrhoea or psoriasis you can be considered for an FUE (or an FUT for that matter). In some cases your doctor may want to mix and match procedures if he/she feels that one technique might work better in a certain area than another technique, although there’s no way to know in advance if that will be the case.
In determining exactly which technique will be right for you the surgeon will examine a number of different criteria including:
- The extent of your hair loss.
- The density of your remaining hair.
- The condition of your scalp in the various areas.
- The speed with which you are currently losing your hair.
- The estimated number of grafts required to achieve the desired result.
- Whether there is a discrepancy in colour between donor and recipient areas.
As stated your surgeon may determine that you are a better candidate for an FUE than an FUT but there is no way to know before a thorough examination is conducted. In general terms an FUE will give the surgeon more precise control but with some men the characteristics of their mane mean that such precision is not an overriding concern. Again, talk to your doctor before deciding which technique will be best for you.
James Nesbitt didn’t set out to become a role model for men considering a hair transplant but by being candid about how hair loss was impacting his personal and professional life he has helped scores of other men find the courage to do something about this most vexing condition. Next time we’ll be profiling Jude Law, his struggles with hair loss and how he came to the decision that hair restoration was the right path for him. Until then, if you have questions about hair transplantation or would like to schedule a consultation, call Hair Transplant Glasgow on 0141 3663 118 and put your major concerns behind you.