Follicular Unit Extraction – FUE. The most requested hair transplant technique today. Suitable for minor to advanced hair loss patterns. Also FUE expands the donor area. To now use alternative hair resources. Such as beard, cheats and leg hair. Known as BHFUE. FUE is a blind technique. Meaning the hair follicles are not visible on extraction. Because they are below the skin surface. FUE removes the hair follicles individually. As a result, there’s no need for stitches. As well as no linear scar. With the extraction carefully spread around the back and sides of the head.
PROS to Follicular Unit Extraction
✔ The extraction can be spread randomly
✔ Leaves no linear scar
✔ Recovery is fast and minimally restrictive
✔ Able to “cherry pick” the hairs to suit the area of placement
✔ The donor area is expanded
✔ Options available such as Body hair
What is FUE?
FUE removes hair follicles one by one. Consequently adjustments can be made. As the depth and direction can alter. Therefore it’s important to the quality of the hair transplant result.
FUE spreads the hair extraction over a wide area. As a result changes to the scalp can be minimal. Especially when performed to a high standard. Following an educated extraction pattern. As well as a harvesting protocol. It’s important to note. FUE lowers the hair density around the head. Consequently if too much is removed. Or incorrectly, it can leave a cosmetically patchy and low hair density. Performed to a high standard. Your hair can look untouched.
FUE Punch Diameter – Does Matter?
FUE Punch Diameter – Does Matter? Larger punches can be faster and easier to use. Generally, they require less precision and can take more hair in one punch. But this is not Pure FUE.
We are dealing with micro numbers with variants in mm´s. With differences when comparing the use of a smaller .75 mm FUE punch to that of a 1.0 mm. But, the area of extraction is 85% smaller. With a .8 mm punch, the area of extraction is 60% smaller. with around a 0.85mm punch diameter being able to remove the majority of follicular units.
A number of punch sizes are used with FUE. Some doctors preferring a larger punch diameter. Others prefer to refine the punch size and use a 0.75-0.8mm diameter punch size. The smaller punch can remove or at least minimise skin trauma. As well as peripheral damage to surrounding FU and reduce visible scarring. Whilst being able to encompass an intact follicular unit without damage or transection.
The FUE Harvesting Extraction Pattern
By splitting the safe zone into areas. It is possible to calculate the safe number of grafts. As a result, whether the donor can supply the grafts needed. For now and in the future. Therefore allows for a more accurate calculation. For instance the average hair density and the hair count ratio.
This is important. As the extracted hairs do not regrow. Meaning, the hair density reduces. If the remaining hair is reduced too much. The area will become patchy. Often much more than 4500 – 5000. Even taken over multiple procedures. Will start to be a problem.
The numbers may change but the % is always similar. The safe figure is around 35%. Even over multiple procedures. Although, hair characteristics can play a role. As some hide hair loss easier. If too much is removed it leaves obvious “hairless” areas. Also, more visible scarring. As a result, it will impair the donor for future hair transplants.
FUE – Why It´s Better To Shave The Donor Hair
Shaving allows the Doctor to precisely measure the hair angles. Especially the follicular unit (FU ) angle as it exits the scalp. The hair density changes around the head.
To perform FUE to the highest standard the donor area requires total shaving. With the exception of small procedures such as 100-500 grafts. Smaller areas can be shaved and hidden by surrounding hair. Shaving will allow for a better harvesting pattern. With the FU spread easier over a wider surface area. This will reduce the change in hair density over the donor. Also, avoid over-harvesting leaving patchy low-density areas. The extraction % changes dependent on hair density. As a result, without shaving this is almost impossible to calculate. This is especially true with larger hair transplant procedures. FU angulations, skin variations, healing can all be helped.
FUE – The Types of Punch Instrument Used
FUE being a blind extraction method. Meaning it is not possible to see below the skin. As a result, this is the difficulty when punching the graft. Each extraction may vary. For instance, dependent on the area and the angle of the hairs. The need to change position while punching is normal. Pressure control is also important. To achieve minimum transaction. Considering the effects to the surrounding hair units.
There are two FUE punch methods. Hand controlled manual and motorised. Manual has greater sensitivity for the user. As a result can measure the friction on the punch. As it enters the skin. Motorised is more efficient for the user. Regardless which, it’s important transaction is kept to a minimum. Say around 1-2%. Even demanding cases should not rise above 5%.