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Hair Transplant Talk: What is FUE and How Does it Work?

What are FUE Hair Transplants and How Do They Work?

Follicular unit extraction (FUE), not to be confused with follicular unit transplantation (FUT) is a kind of hair transplant procedure that involves the harvesting of individual hair follicles from a donor site on the body, particularly from the back and side areas of the head.

Once these follicles are extracted, they are then implanted onto the affected regions. In most cases, males suffering from male pattern baldness undergo the procedure on the horseshoe area of their heads.

All About FUE Hair Transplants

How does FUE work?

A FUE hair transplant procedure typically involves the use of 1 to 4 individual hair follicles that are harvested when the patient is under local anesthesia. The surgeon in charge uses micro-surgical extraction instruments that range between 0.6 mm and 1.0 mm in diameter to take out the follicles.

Once this is done, the surgeon, through the use of specialized micro-surgical needles, penetrates the affected area on the scalp set to receive the grafts. This delicate procedure requires expertise and experience if it is to be conducted successfully. This is largely because the grafts have to be inserted at a particular angle and density that aligns with the patient’s hair. This is the only way the new hair transplants will be able to have a realistic and natural hair pattern.

How long does the procedure take?

In most cases, a FUE hair transplant procedure can be done in either one or several smaller sessions. It also tends to take more time than a standard strip surgery, but the good thing is that it does not leave any obvious scars like the latter.

It is also important to note that amount of time taken for an FUE procedure also tends to vary based on the number of grafts being used. This means that a minor procedure, where perhaps only 200 grafts are needed, can be finished in several hours. On the other hand, a major procedure needing 2,500 to 3,000 grafts will require a procedure that may stretch over two days.

What is the recovery period?

For starters, a great San Francisco FUE doctor will tell you that unlike strip harvesting transplants (see link below), a standard FUE hair restoration procedure will not need huge sections of the scalp to be harvested. Another thing is that with an FUE procedure there is no linear incision or scarring on the patient’s head.

With that said, there is rarely any significant post-surgical pain or discomfort with FUE procedures. The average recovery time also stands at less than seven days.

Related: FUE vs Strip Harvesting

Are the results permanent?

With a FUE hair transplant procedure, the results are indeed permanent, but the initial implanted grafts will naturally shed after a couple weeks of treatment, and then grow back healthy and strong.

Contact Us Today for San Francisco or San Jose FUE Hair Restoration

We are proud to announce that our hair transplant surgeon, Dr. John Diep, is the only Bay Area FUE surgeon for all ethnic hair types. You can rest assured your transplant will be done with the best, most natural results. Click here to see before and after photos or contact us online for a free and confidential consultation!