I’m interested in getting a hair transplant, i’ve been losing my hair slowly for the past decade, and i’m 35 years old. There seems to be two different hair transplant techinques, but what are the advantages to each technique?
There are two types of harvesting techniques. The only real difference between these two procedures is how we remove the donor tissue. The remaining parts of the surgery are usually identical between both procedures.
FUT or follicular unit transplantation we remove a thin strip of tissue from the occipital portion of the scalp, which we call the donor area. The tissue-strip is then carefully dissected using a microscope to create individual grafts. We then place these grafts into the recipient sites.
FUE or follicular unit excision we remove donor tissue using a small circular punch ranging between 0.7 mm to 1.2 mm. The tiny hair-bearing tissue contains the follicular units which we remove individually. We place these grafts into the recipient sites.
Advantages of FUE and FUT
Here are some of the advantages of each harvesting technique. First, the benefit of FUT does not have to shave down the hair in the donor area- this allows patients to camouflage the procedure easily. Another advantage of FUT is that in most cases, we can remove more grafts from the donor area in a single surgery. Also, we can extract more grafts with multiple procedures without any visual difference in the donor area.
FUE has its advantages as well. They include but are not limited to leaving small circular scars. These small scars can be covered up and made not visible even with a short hairstyle. There is very minimal post-operative discomfort after the FUE procedure, in comparison to FUT.
Most clinics have a higher cost for the FUE compared to FUT- this is because the FUE devices are costly, and the procedure requires more of the doctors time. I only say this because I do FUE extractions myself. Some clinics have surgical technicians performing FUE harvesting. I believe every clinic should disclose this information, as to who is performing each part of the surgical procedure.
Dr. Glenn Charles – Member of the Coalition of Independent Hair Restoration Physicians and recommended on the Hair Transplant Network