Hair loss impacts thousands of men and women across the country and many of them turn to hair restoration to gain the dense and full hairline they desire. A hair transplant moves hair from the donor area of the scalp, typically the back and sides of the scalp, to the area of the scalp where the hair is balding or thinning. It takes an experienced and steady hand to move the hair grafts from one area of the body to another while still maintaining a natural look to the appearance of the hair. Patients that are searching for a doctor to perform their hair restoration procedure should make sure that their surgeon is board-certified by the American Board of Hair Restoration Surgery (ABHRS).
According to its website, the idea for the American Board of Hair Restoration Surgery was first discussed in June 1995 during a seminar in Chicago. A group of speakers brought up the idea of a certifying board in the field of hair replacement surgery.
The discussions continued for another year and, in 1996, the American Hair Loss Council invited all of the various specialty groups with physicians that performed hair restoration surgery to be part of a discussion of a board-certification process about hair restoration surgery. From their meetings, it was” recommended that an independent examining body be organized to develop a credentialing and examination process, the successful completion of which would assure the public of the individual’s educational ability to perform safe, aesthetically sensitive hair replacement surgery.”
In June 1996, the organizational meeting for a hair replacement certification examination was held in New York City. Finally, in September of 1996, the first formal board meeting was held in Nashville. The elected officers and committee chairpersons “embarked on the development of a written and oral examination, each of which is statistically validated with regard to their ability to discriminate between those whose practice habits were consistent with safe, aesthetically sensitive hair restoration surgery.”
In order for a surgeon to become board-certified by the ABHRS, the organization “requires demonstration of training, evidence of post-training experience, and successful completion of Written and Oral Examinations on the entire scope of the specialty. All applicants must submit a signed and notarized examination application and include the general application requirements.”
When the American Board of Hair Restoration Surgery is evaluating the standards of practice of a surgeon, the ABHRS Credentials Committee will base the acceptance criteria on “generally accepted methods of hair restoration surgery as published in current hair transplant journals and textbooks.
Beyond the general requirements put forth by the Board, ABHRS applicants must meet all of the additional criteria for one of the routes listed below to achieve their goal of being board-certified by the American Board of Hair Restoration Surgery:
In order to maintain their certification, diplomates must meet four criteria as discussed below:
Patients that are interested in finding a hair restoration surgeon that has been deemed to be board-certified by the American Board of Hair Restoration can visit the physician directory of the ABHRS website to learn more about the board-certification status of their doctor of choice.