The FUE hair transplant procedure is the less invasive hair transplant with almost invisible scars or traces in the donor area and a minimized postoperative trauma. This hair transplant procedure extracts the follicular units directly on the patient’s donor area with circular micro-punches.
Scarless fue hair transplant :
FUE hair transplant was introduced to the hair transplant community in 2004.
At the time, surgeons were looking for new way to expand the donor area and use the temple area for transplantation. Indeed, the FUE expands by 30 to 50% the donor area and thus the number of grafts available.
Individual follicular units are selectively removed from the back and sides of the scalp as they are moved to the front, top, and crown of the scalp..
Our clinics use manual and engined micro-surgical punches (in diameter between 0,7 and 0,9 mm) to ensures that each follicular group of hair is precisely removed one by one without damage to the surrounding skin. The punch is inserted into the skin and is stopped as it enters the coarse reticular dermis and before it enters the softer subcutaneous fat.
During 15 days after the operation, the patient has some crust and red spots that will disappear forever after this initial period.
The hair is usually trimmed at 1mm length to ensure the surgeon a good vision of the grafts. For operation below 1500 grafts, we can only trim a small portion of the scalp which is hidden by surrounded hair. That way the patient can keep his/her hairstyle.
Why FUE hair transplant ?
The goals of the research that lead to FUE were the following :
In our days, we can differentiate many evolution of the FUE, like the F.I.T procedure (Follicular Isolation Transplantation developped by Dr Patrick Mwamba) which differ by the patient’s position, the numbers of steps (3 to 3 steps) and the time spent by the grafts outside of the body.
All FUE hair transplant procedures should answer the non linear scar requisite and allow for a homogeneous harvesting.
FUE method steps :
For FUE hair transplant, the hair has to be trimmed to a very short length. It is impossible to harvest a FUE graft more than 1/2mm length. However, a total trim down is not compulsory if the number of graft is less than 2000 (It is the patchy method). Follicules are then selected directly on the patient’s head and isolated using the punch. Using micro forceps, the grafts are harvested out in the patient’s skin one by one. Each follicul is then cleaned and verified under microscopes.
At that point, the implantation process can start. This one is the same as FUT.
After 10 to 15 days, the extractions traces fade away and the donor area regains it’s normal look. Very small traces will remain for a couple of months and will get more and more discreet as time goes by.
15 days are needed approximately for the crust on the recipient area fade away.
FUE Punch size
FUE punches have evolved a lot in the recent years. At the beggining of FUE, biopsy punches were used. Rapidily, new FUE punches were used entirely made of Titanium, which is a body-friendly material, and different sizes were manufactured. The new sizes ranging from 0,7 to 0,9mm in diameter increased the quality of the FUE hair transplant as it made the harvesting less and less visible.
However, it is false to claim that only the FUE punches will enable a no-scar or at least a extremely discreet FUE hair transplant. The sharpness of the blade, the trauma induced by the punch penetration as well as the genetics of the patient will play a role just as important as diameter size.