Follicular Unit Transplantation is a surgical hair transplant procedure where hair is transplanted to the balding areas of the scalp using the traditional strip method.
Follicles are taken from the ‘permanent’ zones on the scalp, usually the back and sides, where hair is more resistant to balding. This is accomplished by using naturally occurring groups of hairs called follicular units.
After the patient’s scalp is anesthetized, the doctor removes a strip of tissue from the permanent zone, which is then cut into individual follicular units using microscopic dissection techniques. As these follicular unit grafts are being prepared, the doctor makes tiny holes in the scalp, called recipient sites, where the grafts are placed.
The aesthetic qualities of a hair transplant are determined by the arrangement and positioning of the follicular unit grafts. Depending on the patients’ history of hair loss, the decision on how to arrange the grafts is made on a case-by-case basis. Follicular unit transplants replicate the way hair naturally grows to complete a natural look and feel that is undetectable from one’s original hair.
When you arrive for your hair transplant, our staff will begin by going over your schedule for the day. Your surgical consent form will be reviewed along with the completion of other paperwork, and your doctor will answer any questions that you may still have. Your doctor will then carefully draw on the hairline that was marked and photographed during your consultation. At this point you will have the chance to examine and discuss before proceeding. The doctor will then take high quality photographs that will become part of your permanent medical record.
Sedatives will be given to relax you before the start of your hair transplant procedure; however, you can remain fully alert if you like. You will be offered a movie selection and TV, or alternatively, you can listen to music of chat to the doctor and medical staff. The graft dissection will be performed in the same room as your surgery so that we can explain what we are doing at every step of the way and answer any questions you may have.
The length of your permanent hair transplant procedure will depend on how many follicular unit grafts are transplanted. Small sessions of less than 800 grafts can be finished by midday. Larger sessions of 2400 or more generally take a full day.
How long will the treatment take?
On average, the treatment takes no more than a day to complete. However, when large numbers of hairs are required, the patient can split the procedure across two days.
Follicular unit transplantation (FUT) yields the most donor hair and is best suited for more extensive hair loss and in patients where the main concern is maximising the use of a donor supply.
The hair is efficiently used because of the precise nature of the procedure – and the fact that the extraction is from the area that is densest and most stable.
A limitation of FUT is that it leaves a line scar in the donor area. With normal styling, this is easily covered with hair, but it may prevent someone from wearing their hair very short.
The FUE method is better suited for individuals who don’t have extensive hair loss. In the case of a candidate having extensive hair loss, multiple procedures may be required.
In certain cases, where the hair loss is only minimal, we will also recommend a hair loss prevention program, with recommended lotions and medications.
The entire is carried out under local anaesthetic so patients are generally very comfortable and relaxed. Post-operative pain is managed with painkillers which are provided in the Zestige hair pack.
Price is calculated on an individual basis depending on the complexity of the hair transplant required. You will be advised on the cost following a consultation with one of our experts.
This depends on the number of hair grafts required. On average, the procedure last 6-8 hours. However, when large numbers of hair grafts are required, the surgery can be split across two days.
The new outline of the hair will be visible immediately, but it is normal for the transplanted hair to shed a few weeks after the procedure. This may cause the transplanted area to appear thinner initially. New transplanted hair begins to grow at around 10 weeks. At about 6 months you will start to see a visible improvement in the transplanted area. After 12 months, you will experience significant growth and thereafter it will continue to improve.
The cause and nature of hair loss will dictate whether the patient is suitable for a procedure. It is quite possible that a person with extensive hair loss can achieve extremely good results after transplant surgery. Patients can also go onto a hair loss prevention program. Our experts will be able to measure hair loss to identify the best course of action
This is variable from person to person. It depends on the nature of your work and the aftereffects of surgery. Some people experience swelling post-surgery that can take a few days to settle. There will also be some scabbing post-surgery. If you have enough hair to disguise this or work from home, you may feel ready to return to work the next day but if you have a strenuous job you may consider the tasks you do for the first few days.
It is advised that you do not have any alcohol or caffeine on the day of surgery. You are also advised to stop smoking at least 24 hours prior to the procedure. Smoking decreases blood flow to the transplanted area and therefore decreases nutrient delivery to the transplanted follicles.
Take a shower and take care of your personal hygiene the morning of the operation. Do not have any styling products in your hair. Come to the operation well rested and having eaten a light breakfast.
The dressing at the donor site can be soaked off the day following the procedure. Wash the area thoroughly and apply aloe vera to reduce any irritation. Make sure the transplanted area is kept clean to reduce chance of infection. The transplanted area can be washed 4 days post-surgery. Use the shampoo provided in the hair pack, and follow a non-touch policy to wash your hair in your first hair wash. In subsequent hair washes you can use gentle movement to help remove the scabs. Normal hair-washing regime can be resumed after 8 days.
You should lay on your back with your head elevated at 45 degrees for the first 2 days. Use a cold compress on your cheekbones following the surgery to reduce the chance of swelling. Return to surgery 7 days after surgery to have the stitches removed.
In most cases, the procedure is carried out under local anaesthetic and you can go home alone following surgery. Sometimes, you will be offered a mild sedative and this will require you to have an escort.
Day 2 – this is when you soak your dressing off your scalp and wash the donor site. Keep misting the transplanted area throughout the day with the spray provided in the hair pack. Day 4 – this is when you can wash the transplanted area using the shampoo provided and a non-touch policy Day 8 – you can go ack to normal routine for hair washing
There is no maximum age limit for hair transplant surgery, it is more important that you have sufficient hair follicles available at the donor site. However, at Zestige we consider it unethical to operate on person under 18.