HAIR TRANSPLANT SURGERY
Hair transplant is a surgical technique that transfers hair follicles from a donor site (usually the back of the head where hair is resistant to balding) to a recipient site with thinning or bald hair, to restore a fuller head of hair. The hair follicles are carefully removed one by one and implanted into the recipient site. The transplanted hair grows naturally from the new follicles, just like the hair in the donor site.
TWO KINDS OF HAIR TRANSPLANT PROCEDURES:
There are two main hair transplant techniques: Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT) and Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE).
FUT, also referred to as strip harvesting, involves removing a strip of skin from the donor site and dividing it into separate hair follicles, which are then transplanted to the recipient area. This method leaves a linear scar in the donor site that is usually concealed by short hair.
FUE involves harvesting individual hair follicles from the donor site using a specialized tool, then transplanting them to the recipient area. This method results in hundreds to thousands of small dot scars in the donor site, but does not leave a linear scar.
Both FUT and FUE are effective in restoring hair growth, and the best option for a patient will depend on their specific needs and preferences.
WHAT HAPPENS DURING A HAIR TRANSPLANT:
The hair transplant procedure is performed under local anesthesia to numb the donor and recipient sites. In a FUT procedure, a strip of skin is taken from the donor area and divided into separate hair follicles, which are then transplanted to the recipient site. The donor site is closed using sutures or staples. In an FUE procedure, individual hair follicles are harvested using a specialized punch tool and transplanted to the recipient site.
Once the hair follicles have been harvested, the recipient area is prepared for transplantation by making small incisions. The hair follicles are then carefully inserted into the recipient site. Within a few months, the transplanted hair will start growing.
Post-operative swelling and discomfort may occur, but they can be managed with medication. It’s crucial for the patient to follow the surgeon’s post-operative guidelines for the best outcome. The transplanted hair will continue to grow and mature over the next 12 to 18 months, resulting in a fuller head of hair.
RISKS AND BENEFITS OF HAIR TRANSPLANT
As with any surgical procedure, hair transplantation carries certain risks. Some potential risks and complications of hair transplantation include:
- Numbness or tingling in the treated area
- Unsatisfactory aesthetic results
However, these risks are generally rare and can be minimized by choosing an experienced and qualified hair transplant surgeon.
The benefits of hair transplantation include:
- A natural appearance
- Long-lasting results (transplanted hair grows and matures for a lifetime)
- Enhanced self-esteem and confidence
- Non-invasive (no cuts or incisions on the head)
Hair transplantation can be an effective solution for those facing hair loss or thinning hair. It’s crucial for patients to weigh the risks and benefits and to choose a skilled and experienced hair transplant surgeon for the best results.