Here are some useful information about hair transplantation that will allow you to sort through the arguments and techniques of practitioners. How to make the right choice for your hair, beard and eyebrow transplant?
There are two different methods in the field of hair transplantation:
FUT (Follicular Unit Transplantation):
This is the old strip technique. A strip of hair skin is removed to obtain hair follicles. This technique leaves a linear scar on the back of the head.
FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction):
Is the most sophisticated method, effective, painless and scarless leaving only tiny dots on the back of the head that will be hidden by existing hair.
The appearance of the scar on the donor area is therefore a criterion allowing patients to choose one technique or the other.
What is the FUE Hair Transplant Method?
The technical hair graft FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) is a technique of grafting. The grafts are removed using a fine micro-punch (0.7 to 0.9 mm in diameter depending on the quality of the hair) directly from the donor area to the back of the head. This technique makes it possible to obtain several thousand grafts of 1 to 3 hairs each which will then be re-implanted one by one as tight as possible on the recipient area. This operation is done under local anesthesia, it is painless and the result is final.
Proceeding of the FUE- Hair Transplantation.
Grafts picking phase:
The donor area (graft extraction area) is limited:
The number of follicles, able to removed, is determined according to the age of the patient, the potential evolution of his baldness, the limited or unlimited capacity of the donor area… The goal is not to extract at any cost a spectacular number of grafts, regardless of the age of the patient, his alopecia profile, or the level of the donor area. It is necessary to pay attention to the arguments put forward on the Internet sites and in certain centers of hair implants which are often catchy but do not reflect the reality!
The grafts are removed manually or motorised from the shaved back part of the head ‘donor area’. We extract directly grafts often containing 1 to 3 hairs each (ultra-micrografts) which are stored temporarily in a preservation solution before being implanted on the recipient area. The harvesting stage is the longest, lasting several hours for several thousand of grafts.
Follicles that are extracted DONT GROW in the donor area (or in very small quantities)! Each patient has a limited stock of hair that can be removed and implanted over several hair transplant sessions. It is therefore important that the physician analyze the patient’s baldness level so that future sessions can be planned.
Preparation of the recipient area / Implantation of grafts:
This step consists of making numerous small incisions about 1 mm wide on the bald area called slits, using a sapphire microblade. The incisions must be made by a specialist surgeon in capillary implant who knows the procedures for the depth of the incisions, the density of the incisions, the direction of regrowth of each bald area.
There are several graft implantation techniques: Tweezers or Choï Pen also known as DHI (Direct Hair Implantation):
• FUE Implantation tweezers
It involves placing the micro-grafts very gently one by one in the incisions (previously made by the doctor) using a micro-tweezers or forceps. Each graft is inserted into the incisions in a perfectly anchored and stabilized manner so that only the superficial part of the hair remains visible on the surface. The ultra-micro-grafts of 1 hair are preferably placed on the front line, those containing more than 2 hairs are placed in the middle and more at the back.
• FUE implantation Pen (CHOI pen) / Direct Hair ImplantationThe Direct Hair Implant technique (DHI) is the evolution of the FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) method.The difference is that for the DHI, the implantation and incisions of the channels are done at the same time with Choi implanting pens:The Choi implanting pen contains a needle where the follicle is placed to be deposited directly in the recipient area. Implantation can be done between existing hair without shaving hair on the receiving area. This technique is used most often for female hair transplant and for patients who dont want shave the hair.
This act must be done by a specialist in hair implants and a medical team who must have use knowledge of tools and the placement of grafts in implant pens. For the use of the Choi pen, you need a larger team that is why the DHI technique costs more than the technique FUE tweezers.
The specialist hair transplant doctor can tell his patient if this method is applicable or not according to the level of baldness and the quality of the hair.
Duration of the intervention:
The duration of the FUE hair transplant procedure, depends largely on the extraction phase. It takes a total of between 6 and 8 hours of operation for about 4000 grafts.
Result after the intervention
At the end of the procedure, the appearance of the transplanted area is very discreet. The sampling area where grafts were removed will leave many small holes less than one millimeter in diameter. The healing will be spontaneous leaving small white dots almost invisible that will be hidden by the existing hair once pushed.
Implanting hair in an area with heavy existing hair increases the risk of Shockloss!
Shockloss is a reactional hair loss related to a hair transplant procedure.
It can intervene:
– performing hair transplant for patient who has hair loss active (unstabilized)
– doing hair transplant for a young patinet (less then 25 years old).
– implanting too many grafts in the same session. The tired scalp can not feed all the new follicles and may reject some of them.