Advantages of Follicular Unit Extraction (aka FUE)

1. For the vast majority of hair transplant procedure candidates, the most important advantage conferred by the FUE procedure over other hair restoration surgical methods is the minimized appearance of scarring. Strip harvesting necessitates the production of a linear scar. This is a significant concern for patients who want to wear their hair very short. Although the thin linear scar may be concealed by the hair above the scar, there are patients who have scars that have widened and there are also patients who have several scars from multiple procedures. There is no linear incision or stitches required in an FUE surgery. This allows a patient to wear his/ her hair short as there is no need to hide an aesthetically displeasing scar with long hair. Keep in mind that although FUE is an exciting advancement that boosts the field of hair transplant surgery closer to obtaining a minimally invasive status, FUE is not a completely scarless procedure. Small circular incisions (typically between 0.8 mm – 0.9mm, depending on the patient’s hair type) are created that leave a tiny white dot. Those dots are not visible unless the hair is shaved to a very short length (typically #0-#1). 

2. Healing of the donor area is faster, there is less postoperative down time, and there is less post-operative discomfort with the FUE procedure relative to the FUT surgical procedure, though post surgical discomfort from FUT is typically not severe. The difference in post-op healing is due to the fact that there are no sutures in the scalp post FUE and there are just tiny circular incisions in the donor region that close up overnight. The small punches require less time to heal than linear scars. 

3. FUE hair grafts can be taken from more diverse areas like the neck and chest, which is not possible with FUT. 

4. The FUE surgical hair restoration method allows the surgeon to choose the follicles with more hairs per follicle. 

When performed by an experienced hair transplant surgeon, FUE is an amazing procedure. It is important to note that some physicians rely on medical technicians to perform the FUE extractions; however, this practice is not appropriate, as only a licensed medical physician should conduct the extractions. Technicians should not perform incision and slit making. They can be involved in pulling out the grafts after the physician creates circular incisions, implantation into premade slits, arranging the grafts, and placing the postoperative dressings.

If you would like to schedule a consultation with a leading hair transplant surgeon to ascertain if you are a good candidate for a FUE hair transplant in Beverly Hills, CA, please feel free to contact a surgeon.

Thanks to Marc Dauer, MD for their insight into hair restoration and surgery.