It is believed that the reason we have eyelashes is to serve as a sensory organ warning that an object is close to the eye and evasive action, such as moving the head or closing the eyes, should be taken.
As humans have developed so eyelash fluttering to denote an interest, possibly sexual, in others has come into play. Long thick eyelashes are considered a sign of feminine beauty and the use of mascara to artificially thicken and enhance them is a basic make up routine.
Eyelashes are subject to a number of afflictions that can cause them to become thin or completely lost. Among these are Madarosis which results in the loss of lashes. Blepharitis occurs on the eyelid edges where the lashes grow, they become infected and flaky causing irritation.
Ingrowing lashes known as Trichiasis, parasitic infections and styes can also affect eyelash growth.
The Effect of Eyelash Thinning
Thinning or total loss of eyelashes can have a devastating effect on a woman’s confidence, the effect around the most important and noticeable feature on the face has, until recently, been impossible to permanently repair. In the past only the introduction of false eyelashes has helped to temporarily mitigate the noticeable absence of lashes.
Now techniques have been developed to effectively transplant human donor hair onto both the upper and lower eyelids without damaging the prospects for new lash follicles to grow and flourish and existing lashes to remain undamaged.
Transplanting eyelashes is a delicate procedure requiring highly skilled micro surgical techniques, specialised instruments and measurement technology and a trained and experienced medical team.
Although some men undergo eyelash transplants, the majority of procedures are carried out on women, the only variation is the number of lashes that are transplanted as women have more lashes and denser growth than men.
The number of lashes to be transplanted is assessed in each case, depending upon the number of lashes already existing on the lids. On average a total of anywhere between 30 and 80 lashes are implanted, one at a time, and will eventually grow normally. In normal circumstances an eyelash takes between two and three months to grow.
The procedure is carried out in most cases under local anaesthetic and should be painless. The patient will have some bruising that will disappear leaving a natural look, permanent results and any scarring should be virtually undetectable.
It is vitally important that anybody considering the procedure should carry out rigorous checks on any medical facility offering eyelash transplant operations. At the least you will need to know about their experience and see for yourself evidence of their past successes, verifiable testimonials are a good start.
Some eyelash transplant procedures have not had a high success rate, new growth has been restricted or completely lost and existing lashes damaged so do carry out a careful investigation and obtain the best possible advice.
The Cost of Eyelash Transplants
The cost in the USA is around $3000 an eye and can vary considerably. The first eyelashes transplant in the UK took place this summer (2009) at a cost of three thousand five hundred British Pounds. The nineteen year old patient suffered from trichtillomania, an obsessive pulling out of hair.
The four hour procedure involved taking hairs from the back of the patients head and inserting them in her eyelids, where they are expected to take four to six months to thicken up.
The surgeon who carried out the operation is quoted as saying “ we often look to America for the latest in cosmetic surgery as they are the pioneers in the industry, but not all are as successful or as safe as this one”