TV doctor Christian Jessen came to Crown Clinic for a second hair transplant to boost his hairline. The star of the hit show Embarrassing Bodies had the £5,500 procedure after recently dealing with pneumonia that caused his hair to thin.
Our surgeon Dr Asim Shahmalak transplanted 3,000 hairs from the back of Dr Christian Jessen’s scalp to the front. Dr Jessen, 46, had the procedure four years after his first op because pneumonia led to continued hair loss and he wanted a fuller hairline.
He trusted Dr Shahmalak so much, there was only one surgeon he was going to come to for his second procedure.
Dr Christian Jessen said: “I am very pleased that I had it done again – it has been very empowering for me.”
“I thought, ‘why am I constantly telling people how to change things about themselves that they dislike if I can’t do the same for myself?’
“Cosmetic surgery is viewed so differently for men and women.
“Having a boob job for a woman is seen as an everyday thing these days, but for a man to have a hair transplant is seen as a bigger step. There are so many men out there who want to have a hair transplant but don’t dare.
“I just hope by talking about it openly that I can remove some of the stigma surrounding male cosmetic procedures. It’s great that other celebrities like James Nesbitt and Wayne Rooney have gone public as well, which can help others not suffer in silence.”
Up to 30% of male hair transplant patients go in for round two. This is usually because they continue losing their natural hair despite the transplanted hair remaining in place.
Dr Christian Jessen had 1,800 grafts (around 3,000 individual hairs) transplanted via a procedure known as Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT). The operation involved taking a strip of hair from the back of his scalp and dividing it into individual hairs, which our surgeon then transplanted into his hairline. It takes up to a year for the transplanted hair to fully grow back.
The Embarrassing Bodies star had his first transplant with Dr Shahmalak in 2009. He disliked the ‘curtains’ style of his original hair, which led to Dr Jessen receiving some negative comments on chatrooms and social media.
Dr Jessen said: “After I had my first transplant, those comments stopped immediately, and I haven’t received any more comments on my hair since.”
We filmed Dr Shahmalak on the show after performing a transplant and I remember thinking it looked great. I thought I could benefit in the same way. Dr Shahmalak has a great manner and I’m pleased with the results.Dr Chrstian Jessen
Why did Dr Christian Jessen need a second transplant
Hair transplant patients like Dr Jessen are advised to take the drug Propecia to minimise further hair loss post-procedure. However, this drug can cause symptoms such as night sweats, which caused Dr Jessen to stop taking the drug. This caused him to lose more hair, which was then exacerbated by a debilitating bout of pneumonia the TV star suffered a year ago.
He explained: “Most of my hair grew back post-pneumonia, however there was a bit less. Any serious illness can result in loss of hair, which is the same for women after they’ve given birth.”
Dr Jessen was delighted when Dr Shahmalak offered to help with a second hair transplant boost. “I hadn’t realised that a second transplant was an option. I noticed there were a few gaps in my hair that needed filling and it could do with being thicker.”
“After I went public with my first procedure, I was inundated with emails asking me about my procedure and where I’d had it done. It’s clearly a very important issue for lots of men. My advice would be if you do decide to have one, make sure you are very careful about the surgeon you choose.”
Dr Christian Jessen states that he chose Dr Shahmalak after they worked together on Embarrassing Bodies. Dr Shahmalak says he enjoyed working with Dr Jessen for a second time.
He said: “I was able to fill in gaps in his temples and transplant some new hair into his mid-scalp.” According to Dr Shahmalak, many patients top up their first hair transplant with a second procedure a few years later, after suffering from further hair loss.
“You tend to find that if men start losing their hair relatively young–such as in their 20s– the hair loss tends to drop off in their 40s.” Dr Shahmalak expressed his joy of operating on another doctor.
“All my patients receive the same care, but there’s added pressure when operating on another doctor. Being recommended by another doctor is a great compliment.”