The most important feature of a successful hair transplant involves achieving a natural-looking hairline and the right hair density, without any signs of the treatment being noticeable.
Our office offers the two most common proven surgical techniques in hair restoration surgery, Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT) and Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE). FUT is commonly referred to as the Strip procedure. It is the more familiar surgical hair restoration technique using naturally occurring groups of 1 to 4 hairs, called follicular units. FUT is an advanced hair transplantation procedures that produces a naturally appearing hairline and appearance.
With the FUT procedure, a strip of scalp is surgical excised and the individual hair follicles are created into naturally occurring hair grafts by our surgeon and skilled technicians. The strip removed is taken from the “safe” or permanent zone of the scalp where the hair follicles are resistant to hair follicle miniaturization or balding. The entire procedure is done under local anesthetic with light sedation if requested by our patients. Most patients are able to watch television or relax with headphones listening to music while the procedure takes place.
Follicular Unit Transplantation enables the hair transplant to look natural both at the individual follicular unit level, and in regards to the overall graft distribution. Since scalp hair normally grows in follicular units of 1 to 4 hairs, the exclusive use of these naturally occurring units with FUT ensures that each graft will be identical to the surrounding follicular units. Thus, when the transplanted follicular units grow hair after a transplant, the overall results of the transplant will appear natural.
The donor harvesting techniques of FUT and FUE are what is really being compared when FUT vs. FUE is referenced. Below, we compare these two donor-harvesting methods in more detail.
The standard FUT strip excision method involves surgically removing a strip of scalp from the bald resistant donor area of the patient. The donor area is then sutured together. These sutures (either stitches or staples) are then removed about ten days after surgery.
Both the FUE and FUT procedures have advantages and disadvantages. The FUT(strip excision) procedure is more economical (typically half the price per graft of FUE) and also enables a patient to move much larger numbers of grafts/hairs to the balding areas during a single surgical session. However, the donor area after a strip excision surgery will require more time before it is fully healed when compared to the FUE surgery.
The decision on which extraction method to use should be individually weighed up in consultation with Dr. Marina Pizarro. There are many factors needing to be taken into consideration before making a decision and Pizarro Hair Restoration would like the opportunity to walk you through the consultation process.