FUT Hair Transplant Surgery
Follicular Unit Transplantation, AKA FUT or Strip Hair Transplant, is a hair transplant procedure where the surgeon transplants follicular units in their natural grouping into the thinning or balding areas of the scalp. In the past, FUT was considered to be the gold standard in hair restoration due, in large part, to its success in aiding in the preservation of the hair follicles during the harvesting process. While follicular unit transplantation is still performed, advances in hair transplantation mean that a good number of patients now choose Follicular Unit Extraction/Excision (FUE) that does not leave a detectable scar.
In general, follicular units contain one to four terminal hair grafts. These hair grafts are nourished by their own tiny blood vessels which contain oil glands and protein sheaths made up of collagen. These biological properties help ensure that the follicular unit grafts keep their entire anatomic structure so the hair that is transplanted to the thinning and balding areas of the scalp looks realistic and healthy after hair transplantation is performed.
Follicular Hair Transplant: The Results
FUT allows a hair transplant surgeon to enjoy greater precision and ease in controlling the direction of a patient’s hair when compared with older methods of hair restoration. The art of placing the transplanted hair in a manner that allows for the most natural distribution will create permanent results that are undetectable from a regular head of hair that has not undergone a hair restoration procedure.
One of the reasons that FUT grew in popularity was that it improved on outdated hair restoration procedures such as micrografts, minigrafts and hair plugs. These older techniques did not allow for any separation of the hairs in their natural units which meant transplanted hair did not have a completely natural look when viewed up close by others.
During a FUT hair transplant surgery, the surgical team uses stereoscopic magnification, to help harvest the highest quality hair grafts, in order to transplant them in their natural direction and normal distribution.
The use of micro-blades and special needles for transplanting the grafts in an FUT Procedure minimizes the possibility of scarring when implanting hair follicles that are packed tightly together. This is done in order to densely pack the transplanted grafts which leads to an appearance of fuller looking hair. It also restores the appearance of a natural looking hairline. An FUT procedure normally takes anywhere from 6-10 hours to perform. The time of the procedure varies depending on the number of grafts transplanted by the surgeon, the size of the area being treated and the distribution of the patients’ hair.
Before and After Hair Transplant Surgery
Day of Surgery
On the day of the Los Angeles hair transplant surgery, our surgical team will design a natural looking hairline that complements the age, sex, ethnic background and facial features of the patient.
First Few Days after the Procedure
Patients may have some redness on the recipient area. The donor area may have some pain and tightness that lasts for a few days. These conditions resolve on their own but they can be addressed with pain medications. The washing of the hair should be done in a certain manner for the first five days after the hair restoration surgery. Patients can resume their normal hair washing after the first five days.
Ten Days following the Procedure
The donor area starts to return back to normal and it becomes safe to remove the sutures or staples. Some patients will experience shock loss around this time. They should not worry about the shock loss as the transplanted hair will begin to grow back within a few months.
Three to Six Months after Hair Transplant Surgery
There is also a chance during this post-surgery time period of patients experiencing some shock loss of their hair. As mentioned above, the transplanted hair will start to grow back a few months after the shock loss.
After 4-6 months, the new hair growth is more visible as the hair becomes thicker and longer.
Eight Months after Hair Transplant Surgery
The implanted hairs will be completely grown at this point although they may not have reached their final length (yet) in some patients. The amount of progress a patient will notice will depend, in large part, on the quality of their donor hair, the total number of transplanted grafts and how they style their hair. The final results will be visible after 12-18 months.
Learn more about “What to expect after a Strip FUT Hair Transplant”.