“How can I prevent hair loss?” It’s a question we hear frequently from people preparing for bariatric surgery. Hair shedding is an unpleasant side effect that affects some people more than others after surgery. There are some things you can do to manage it but it’s not completely preventable for everyone.

Telogen Effluvium  (Stress-related Hair Shedding)

Most people who experience hair shedding will notice it in the first 3 to 6 months after surgery. It’s called telogen effluvium. It’s a form of temporary hair shedding that happens after stress or traumatic events. In this case, the stress is rapid weight loss.

The hair growth cycle has three phases:

  • Anagen (growing; lasts 3 to 5 years)
  • Catagen (transition; lasts 1