What You Need to Know About the Latest Hair Transplant Treatment Options

 In Hair Loss

If you have thinning hair, a receding hairline or bald spots, the time has never been better to have a hair transplant. Today’s techniques are faster, safer and less invasive, and there are more options than ever before. The follicular isolation technique (FIT or FUE), follicular unit transplantation (FUT) and PRP (platelet-rich plasma) are three of the most popular and most successful techniques for both men and women seeking to restore hair to look more youthful and feel more self confident. Here’s a quick rundown of the pros and cons of each:

PRP

This relatively new approach uses the patient’s own blood to encourage the growth of new, healthy hair. In addition to red and white blood cells, platelets are also a part of your blood. These platelets contain growth factors and other proteins that can help repair tissue and stimulate hair follicles. To perform the procedure, the doctor draws blood from a vein in your arm and then processes a portion of it to separate the platelets from the rest of the blood. Then those concentrated platelets are injected into your scalp.

Pros

  • No risk of allergies or foreign-body reactions (PRP comes from your own body)
  • No surgical incisions
  • Can be used to enhance the growth from existing follicles
  • Stimulates hair growth from dormant and miniaturizing hair follicles to help men and women with andreogenetic alopecia (male/female pattern hair loss)
  • No aftercare required
  • No recovery time
  • Doesn’t interfere with, destabilize or cause trauma to follicles during or after treatment

Cons

  • Minor tenderness, redness and swelling
  • Because the technique is relatively new, to date, there have been no clinical studies regarding its effectiveness in treating hair loss

FIT

FIT is sometimes referred to as “follicular unit extraction” (FUE) because it harvests follicles one unit  (or follicle) at a time.

Pros

  • Can be used for scalp as well as beard or other body areas
  • No linear scarring; therefore better for people who prefer very short haircuts
  • Can be used for people with tight or loose scalps
  • Can be used to harvest hair from the nape of the neck
  • Less post-op discomfort compared to FUT

Cons

  • Punch design can result in damaged follicles
  • Scars are cumulative
  • Grafts more fragile than FUT grafts
  • Grafts may not grow as well as FUT grafts
  • Scarring can make subsequent treatments more difficult
  • Donor area must be shaved
  • More time consuming than other techniques
  • Yields fewer grafts per harvest session; therefore, sometimes treatment must extend over two days

FUT

Also called the “strip” technique, FUT removes strips of hair follicles rather than a single follicle at a time, and then those strips are dissected under a microscope before being transplanted.

Pros

  • Generally produces grafts that are of better quality than those extracted via FIT
  • Hair is harvested from areas where growth is more permanent compared to FIT donor areas
  • Yields far more follicles in less time compared to FIT
  • Grafts preserve tissue surrounding follicle during extraction, resulting in less trauma and stronger follicles
  • Less costly

Cons

  • Cannot be used when scalp skin is too tight
  • Results in long scars
  • May not be a good choice for people who are prone to excessive scarring or keloid formation
  • Can cause temporary numbness during healing
  • Uses sutures during healing
  • Longer healing time

PRP, FUE and FUT all offer distinct benefits and disadvantages. Depending upon the type of hair loss you’re experiencing, one technique may be much better suited for your needs. To learn more about all three techniques and which one may be best for you, call today to schedule a consultation.

Recent Posts

Leave a Comment