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Follicular Unit Extraction or Follicular Unit Strip Surgery?

Hair loss specialist

Are you experiencing hair loss? In the United States, approximately 35 million men are experiencing hair loss, which ranges from slightly thinning hair to baldness. Two-thirds of men 35 or older experience some level of noticeable hair loss. By age 50, approximately 85% of men’s hair will have significantly thinned.

While there are multiple factors that contribute to hair loss in men, male pattern baldness, or Androgenetic Alopecia, accounts for over 95% of this baldness.

If you are looking for hair restoration options, you may have heard about two types of hair transplant methods: Follicular Unit Extraction and Follicular Unit Strip Surgery.

The Follicular Unit Extraction Procedure

If you’re considering the Follicular Unit Extraction Procedure (FUE) for hair restoration, you may be interested in knowing a few details about the procedure and healing time.

The FUE procedure, which is also referred to as follicular transfer, generally takes approximately eight hours. During the process, follicular unit grafts, which are comprised of one-to-four hair follicular units, are removed.

In some cases, there may be seven-to-eight hairs in a single graft that are naturally grouped. A tiny punch is used for this procedure, and the units are harvested one at a time.

While the healing time will vary based on skin type, it usually only takes a few days for the skin grafts to take. There will be some redness in the area after four-to-five days. When undergoing FUE, hair may need to be kept shorter in the future.

The Follicular Unit Strip Surgery Procedure

If you’re considering this method of hair restoration, there are some important aspects to consider. Follicular Unit Strip Surgery (FUSS) is a more invasive surgical procedure. During FUSS, a scalp area that isn’t balding would be surgically removed and then placed in the balding area where an incision has been made.

Due to this invasive technique, there is a potential for more complications. In addition to scars, future procedures may prove challenging, or counter-indicated, as a result of the scalp being pulled and rearranged. It also takes longer to recover from this procedure than FUE.

Making an Informed Choice

If you’re not sure which hair restoration procedure is right for you, discussing your options with a hair loss specialist is recommended prior to making a decision. Whether you choose hair transplant surgery or the less invasive approach, you will likely have other questions and concerns in order to make an informed choice, such as the cost of a hair transplant.

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