Hair transplant procedures seem relatively uncomplicated on a superficial level, with most patients understanding that the procedure involves transplanting hair from one area of the scalp to any areas that have been most affected by hair loss or hair thinning. This is certainly accurate, but it leaves out much of what any hair transplant procedure involves from the pre-operative to post-operative stages. Perhaps it is most important to emphasize that a hair transplant involves a commitment on behalf of both the doctor and the patient to ensure the best possible outcome is realized through the use of the available hair transplant procedures.
At the outset, a hair transplant involves an initial consultation with the hair transplant surgeon. During this meeting at a hair transplant center in New York, Houston, California, Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Manila, the doctor and patient will discuss the options that are available and how each option suits the needs of the individual patient. Once the ideal course of action is determined, the doctor will provide the patient with instructions regarding how to prepare for the procedure and what they can expect after the procedure’s completion.
As for the actual procedure, hair transplants involve a team of professionals that include a board-certified surgeon specializing in hair transplantation and restoration along with a staff made up of surgical assistants, medical assistants and registered nurses. The doctor and his or her staff will work in conjunction with one another to harvest the follicular unit grafts from the donor site and prepare them for transplantation in the recipient site. Depending on the procedure, the doctor may create the grafts by removing a thin strip from the donor site or may remove follicles individually for the purpose of transplantation. The former technique is associated with FUT, while the latter is associated with FUE.
Once the follicular units have been prepared, the doctor will begin transplanting the grafts into small incisions made in the recipient site. The doctor will have previously outlined the manner in which these grafts will be transplanted to ensure the patient is able to enjoy a natural-looking hairline as well as added volume and coverage. These transplanted grafts will fall out shortly after the completion of the procedure, but the root of each transplanted graft will begin to regrow in the recipient site a few weeks after the procedure’s completion. Most patients experience the full growth of their newly transplanted follicles after a period of six months, although the results will begin to be visible as soon as two or three months after the transplant session.
How does a hair transplant work?
The way in which hair transplants function is both fascinating and exceptionally effective. Armed with the knowledge that certain areas of the scalp are more prone to the adverse effects caused by the presence of DHT — the hormone responsible for triggering hair loss — doctors focus on the parts of the scalp that are most resistant to DHT and transplant hair follicles from the resistant areas to the areas already affected by DHT. The resistant hair follicles remain just as resistant to DHT once they are transplanted in the recipient site, making a hair transplant procedure a permanent solution for those affected by thinning hair or hair loss.
The way the process works begins with the harvesting of the hair follicles from the resistant donor site. After these hair follicles are harvested, the doctor from our surgery will begin creating the individual grafts that will be transplanted into the recipient site. Once the grafts are prepared, the doctor then arranges the grafts in a way that will appear entirely natural and will blend with the patient’s existing hairline. Although each of these transplanted follicles will fall out within a few days or weeks, the roots will remain securely in place and will eventually grow new follicles in the recipient site. This is how the patient is able to improve their hairline and add volume to their hair in the most natural-looking way possible.
Who performs a hair transplant?
Doctors from Manila to New York, of varying specializations perform hair transplant procedures, and each hair transplant doctor.. These doctors typically hold areas of specialization in general surgery, plastic surgery, cosmetic surgery and dermatology, although there are many other medical and surgical backgrounds in which a hair transplant doctor may hold board certification. Even though the backgrounds may differ, doctors performing hair transplant procedures should specialize in hair transplant procedures and should be able to provide patients with access to the most advanced procedures available, including FUT and FUE.
Given the sheer volume of grafts involved in a single hair transplant session, the doctor is typically accompanied by a support staff to ensure the transplant is efficient and provides the patient with the maximum yield possible. The support staff will usually include medical and surgical assistants as well as nurses, and each one will play a critical role in ensuring the success of the procedure. The number of nurses and surgical assistants needed will vary according to the volume of follicles being transplanted in the session, as a larger session may require additional assistance to ensure the process is as efficient as possible and yields the outcome the patient is seeking.
How long does a hair transplant take?
There are a number of factors that contribute to the overall length of time required to complete a hair transplant procedure, the most obvious of which is the specific type of procedure being sought by the patient. The FUT procedure is usually much shorter than an FUE procedure, with the former being able to yield more follicular grafts in less time. Of course, it is important to note that this is not the only difference between the two procedures, and patients should base their decision regarding the most ideal procedure on the totality of factors associated with FUE and FUT.
In the typical FUT procedure, a single session will be completed in about four hours. During this session, the doctor will be able to transplant a total of up to 3,000 grafts. With each graft containing between one and three hair follicles, a single FUT session could potentially yield between 6,000 and 9,000 individual hair follicles. The typical FUE procedure yields far less individual follicles — up to 1,500 individual grafts on average — and may last as long as eight hours. Despite the limited number of grafts and the longer session length, FUE sessions can be performed on consecutive days and does not leave the horizontal scar common to the FUT procedure.
In short, the length of time required for an individual session will vary greatly based on a number of individual factors specific to the patient. Patients should discuss the best option for the achievement of their hair transplant goals with their doctor during the consultation process in order to make the best possible decision and to yield the best possible results. Patients who opt for the FUT procedure should expect a session lasting roughly four hours in total, and patients electing to undergo the FUE procedure should expect a longer session of roughly eight hours in total.
Is there pain and discomfort during a hair transplant?
The patient remains awake during the entirety of the procedure, and only a local anesthetic is required during the FUE and FUT hair transplant procedures. As a result, most patients report feeling very little pain or discomfort throughout the entirety of the procedure, if they report any discomfort at all. Of course, every patient has a different threshold for pain or tolerance for discomfort, but it remains true that patients should expect to remain fairly comfortable throughout the entirety of the process. In fact, most patients are able to comfortably chat or watch television during the actual hair transplant.
Patients undergoing the FUT procedure should be aware that they might experience some level of discomfort following the completion of the procedure, which is why the doctors in Manila, Philippines, Dubai, Chicago, New York, Connecticut, and Abu Dhabi will be quite likely to prescribe medication to alleviate any discomfort that may follow. Abiding by the doctor’s specific after-care instructions will greatly reduce this possibility.
FUE and FUT patients might also experience some general sensitivity in the donor and recipient sites following the completion of their session, but this sensitivity is usually quite mild and tends to dissipate rather quickly. Again, following the doctor’s after-care instructions will go a long way in ensuring that the possibility of experiencing pain or discomfort is reduced by a wide margin.