Transplantation by the FUE method - Extraction of the follicular unit

Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) hair transplantation has been a popular method for over 12 years. FUE hair transplantation is currently the most widespread hair transplantation technique globally. Over the years, hair transplantation has developed tremendously. FUE transplantation – follicular unit extraction – is a hair transplant technique for people with alopecia or baldness. It is a surgical treatment that involves the removal of hair follicles one by one from the so-called donor area and their implantation into the so-called receiving area.

Follicular units are collected from the back of the head (occipital region) or the temples. They are then reimplanted to the area to be treated.

A doctor performs this medical procedure under local anesthesia. This micrografting technique can also be used to make chin or eyebrow implants.

The difference between FUE and FUT transplantation

FUT (FollicularUnitTransplantation) – Follicular Unit Transplantation – is another method of extracting follicular units that are reimplanted into sparse areas of the patient’s hair.

Unlike FUE, which consists of removing hair follicles one by one, FUT is an indirect removal technique: the doctor removes a horizontal strip of the scalp from which the hair grafts are removed.

FUT is a technique that allows a more significant number of grafts to be harvested at once. However, it is a more invasive procedure performed in the operating room. In addition, it can cause more postoperative pain, especially in the so-called donor area.

However, the intervention is shorter: 2 to 5 hours for FUT versus 3 to 7 hours for FUE. Simply because during FUE, the hair follicles are removed by hand.

The FUT method is generally recommended if the area to be repaired is larger. It is also recommended for people with fine or frizzy hair.

The difference between FUE and DHI transplantation

Like the FUE technique, DHI hair transplantation (DirectHairImplantation) – direct hair implantation – consists of implanting one’s hair in the part affected by baldness or alopecia. Hair follicles are previously taken from the so-called donor area, usually located at the back of the head. In FUE transplantation, the grafts are preserved in a preservative solution, then implanted into open microagents by the doctor.

With the DHI method, creating canals for implants is unnecessary. Instead, the doctor will use a unique tool to insert these follicles.

Advantages of the FUE method

FUE hair transplantation is a surgical solution to baldness that provides a permanent and aesthetic result. The implanted hair is permanent and durable and can be combed or dyed without worry.

One of the main advantages of FUE is that it is a minimally invasive technique that leaves no marks or scars in the harvesting area, as it does not require a scalpel or stitches. It is, therefore, a discreet procedure that does not prevent you from wearing short hair, where you can see the skin under the hair better.

With the FUE method, the number of possible grafts is more significant than with the FUT method. In addition, this micrograft technique has no risk of graft failure.

Disadvantages of the FUE method

Disadvantages of the FUE transplantation technique include the duration of the procedure. It is relatively quick as it does not require hospitalization. However, the collection time is longer than FUT as the follicular units are collected individually.

Therefore, the number of removed and implanted grafts will be lower during the same procedure time. Doing a second session to achieve the expected result may be necessary.

In addition, unfortunately, the FUE method cannot be performed on all hair types. Especially with curly hair or hair that is not straight, there is a risk of removing the follicle without the bulb, as this hair has a “deformed” circumference and is twisted. However, for patients with sparse hair, the FUT method can bring better results with a better density effect.

Procedure for the FUE method

Hair transplantation takes place in several essential steps.

Before the hair transplant, the technical team examines the patient’s hair structure. Then, it determines the harvesting and grafting area needed for the most precise grafts. It will also assess healthy hair growth in the future.

Before the operation, shaving the donor area and anesthetizing it is necessary.

The specialist then removes the grafts using a ” puncher ” tool. It separates the hair and its bulb from the scalp.

The reimplantation area is anesthetized, and the implanter or micro tweezers will be used. Then, the grafts are placed into microgrooves approximately one millimeter wide.

The procedure is not very painful. It does not leave scars, but small scabs may form, disappearing within 7 to 10 days.

The result is not immediate. It is necessary to wait until new hair grows from the implanted bulb. Regrowth begins after 3 or 4 months. The result is visible after six months, and the final result occurs approximately 12 months after the operation.

Is the FUE method painful?

The FUE method is a relatively painless and comfortable hair transplant technique for patients.

Before proceeding with the procedure, the doctor administers a local anesthetic to the patient in the extraction area and then in the implantation area so that the patient does not feel any pain.

Discomfort may be felt after the operation, especially if edema (swelling) appears in the forehead area. However, these discomforts disappear in the first days after transplantation. For this reason, the patient wears a bandage headband that captures the swelling that would otherwise descend to the eye area.

Length of procedure

Several factors can affect the duration of a hair transplant. The main one is the degree of baldness of the patient, as well as the number of hair follicles to be removed and reimplanted. The FUE method generally takes 3 to 7 hours.

Is one procedure enough?

For beginning or average baldness, one session is enough. However, if the baldness is already advanced, a second session may be necessary, as the specialist cannot remove and implant all the grafts at once.

It is recommended to wait several months between the two procedures.

Side effects of FUE

After hair transplantation using the FUE method, you may observe swelling of the forehead and eyes. It usually subsides within 48 to 72 hours. The scabs caused by the graft will fade within ten days.

Immediately after the procedure, continuing professional activities is possible, but avoid staying in the sea or swimming pool due to possible irritation or infection of still unhealed wounds.

The FUE procedure is very safe and minimally invasive under local anesthesia. There are very few potential health risks.

Useful information:

Resting for 30 days after the procedure is ideal, and protecting your head from the sun is perfect. A person can return to everyday life after 2-3 days.

In case of a concern, the patient can ask for a tranquilizer to feel relaxed and fearless.

Transplanted hair falls out in 3 to 6 weeks but grows again within 2 to 4 months. It is a natural phenomenon. The results on the hair can be seen in 12 months.

The procedure lasts about 6 to 8 hours. During the process, breaks will be provided for the patient’s needs. This time may vary depending on the number of grafts to be taken.

The goal is to harvest and “plant” as many of the patient’s existing grafts as possible; the number may vary from person to person. At the end of the operation, the patient is informed about the summary of the removed and transplanted grafts.

The procedure is performed under local anesthesia; the patient feels no pain during the hair transplant.

After the transplant, the patient will receive a special shampoo and medication, and all information about their use will be delivered with the care kit.

FUE transplantation transfers one’s hair follicles, so the results are entirely natural.

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