Follicular Unit Extraction
Hair follicles are removed one by one and prepared for transplant in this method in use since 2004. It is performed without any kind of surgical procedure.
Follicles are removed from the back of the head with micro punch tips 0.7-1mm in thickness and are transplanted into thin or bald areas. An average of 2500-3500 hair grafts can be transplanted into a bald area. Stiches are not needed. With the FUE method, determining the correct density of the transplanted follicles per cm2 is important for the success of the operation. The FUE method is also preferred as it is a more comfortable procedure. It is also estethica’s preferred method as it doesn’t require surgery or leave any visible scarring. It is also a painless procedure as it is performed under local anaesthetic. The procedure, which must be performed in a hospital or operating theatre environment, lasts an average of 5 hours.
A day’s rest is recommended after the FUE procedure, and work can be returned to the following day. Transplanted hair becomes visible after 3 months and takes around 9 months to completely grow.
Today, many hair transplant specialists use a motorised micro punch system to save time. Thanks to this motor, FUE is able to take grafts closer together and, compared with standard combing, is able to obtain more grafts. Another advantage of FUE’s motor is that a far lower proportion of multi-follicle grafts (grafts with 2 or more follicles) split up. It is for these reasons that hair transplants have become a more comfortable procedure.
- It is the latest method, in use since 2004.
- Is a more comfortable operation for both the patient and doctor than older methods.
- Is able to take advantage of the latest technological innovations.
- The length of the procedure is shorter than FUT thanks to its motor and tips.
- Patients are more likely to trust FUE as incisions are not made, meaning lower chance of feeling discomfort.
- There’s no need to spend extra time separating the follicles.
- Only 3 days in bandaging is necessary, rather than 15, as stiches are not required.
- 2500-3000 grafts (on average 6000-6500) hair strands can be transplanted in a single session.
- FUE, unlike FUT, doesn’t leave scarring.
- More than 1 session is possible and more grafts can be taken with FUE.
- 85% of patients’ balding can be solved during a single session. Only 15% may need more than 1 session.
- Transplants using FUE are shorter (an average of 5 hours). There is no need to spend time separating the grafts.
- Follicles taken using the FUE method are cleaned as well as purified of any debris meaning smaller channels are needed. This means no scarring is left.
- The patient is released with a normal hat and unbandaged head.
- The patient can return to (office) work the next day.
- The patient can return to ordinary work after the first hair wash (approximately 36 hours after the procedure). This is much quicker than with FUT.
FUE is today the most reliable and preferred method.
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) in Hair Restoration
Platelets are one of the components of the human blood system. They are circulating in the vasculature along with red and white blood cells. Platelets participate in the blood clotting system and function to stop bleeding at an injury site and assist in the initial process of wound healing. There are many biochemical factors contained within the platelet which are immediately released at an injury site. These factors include Platelet-Derived Growth Factor (PDGF), Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF), Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF) and Fibroblast Growth Factor-2 (FGF-2) among several other healing and growth factors. The combination of these biochemical growth factors initiate and enhance the body’s process of healing and tissue recovery after injury.
Since platelets are contained in the blood system they can be easily harvested from a patient’s own blood. A tube of blood can be drawn from the patient then placed into a centrifuge which spins the blood to separate it into the various components of the blood system. The separated layer containing the concentrated platelets is considered the “platelet rich plasma” or PRP. This layer is removed and can be used in various medical situations in order to enhance tissue regeneration and healing. Platelet rich plasma has been used for many years to assist in the healing process. It has been primarily used in the hospital setting in various operative orthopedic procedures. Recently the process has been used in other areas of medicine and surgery with favorable results.
The stimulation of tissue regeneration and enhanced healing properties of PRP has recently been used in various areas of hair restoration. It has been found to be helpful in preserving the viability of hair follicle grafts during hair transplant procedures and to enhance the tissue healing and promote hair growth in transplanted follicles. These benefits can result in improved graft survival and better hair transplantoutcomes.