Follicular Unit Transplantation
- Length: 2-4 hours (generally outpatient)
- Anesthesia: Local
- Normal recovery: semi-permeable bandage and minimal activity for 7-10 days, full results can take 1-3 months to be visible.
- Possible side effects: itching, seepage, hair loss
- (Testimonial about patient experience or Dr. Min’s skill)
Millions of men (and women) suffer from receding hairlines, thinning and baldness, and many of them would love to restore the look and confidence that comes with a fuller head of hair. Hair transplant surgery is a procedure in which hair is moved from the back and/or sides of the scalp, where the hair is permanent (donor area), to areas that are thinning or bald on the front, top, or crown of the scalp (recipient area). Once transplanted, the hair will continue to grow naturally.
Modern hair transplants have come a long way from the “plugs and rugs” of the past, and through surgery, it’s possible to achieve lasting, natural looking results.
How Does a Follicular Unit Transplant Work?
During an FUT procedure, the patient is sedated and the scalp is numbed with local anesthesia. The scalp will be shampooed and treated with an antibacterial agent. The surgeon then harvests a narrow strip of hair follicles from the donor area (usually the back or sides of the scalp) and closes the wound with sutures. Meanwhile, an assistant will use a microscope to divide the harvested strip into individual grafts of a predetermined size.
The surgeon will then use very small “micro blades” to puncture the recipient area in a predetermined pattern and density, angling the cuts to create a natural hair pattern. Lastly, the grafts will be individually placed in the recipient area, where they will heal and continue to grow normally.
The size and number of the grafts as well as how they are placed will be determined by patients’ hair type, density and desired results. In some cases, multiple transplant procedures are needed, but they can be performed within a short interval.
Your Hair Transplant Options
There are 2 primary options for hair transplants:
Follicular Unit Transplant (FUT): Donor hair follicles are harvested in a strip, divided into individual graft units and implanted in the recipient area.
- Only requires a small area of healthy donor hair
- Does not require that hair be shaved from donor area
- Leaves a scar that will need to be covered by longer hair
- Longer recovery period
Follicular Unit Extraction: Donor hair follicles are harvested and implanted individually using a specialized machine.
- Less invasive
- Quicker recovery
- Requires larger donor area
- Procedure takes longer
Dr. Min’s approach to Hair Transplant Surgery
The Newvue team makes sure that patients have realistic expectations about hair transplant procedures and see exceptional, natural results.
Dr. George Min is a board certified plastic surgeon with experience in the latest hair transplant techniques and technology. He takes a conservative approach that focuses on patient safety and a natural appearance. Dr. Min does not believe in cutting corners, and our state-of-the-art Bellevue facility is unlike any you will find in the Seattle or Bellevue area.
We pride ourselves in being the best, not only in surgery, but also in patient care and education.
Your Initial Hair Transplant Consultation
The role of the consultation is to ensure that you feel informed, confident and excited, and we’ll take as much time as we need to get there.
During your initial consultation, Dr. Min will ask you about your experienced hair loss and your desired results. The first goal is to ensure that you have realistic expectations and are a good candidate for the procedure. He will also ask you questions about your general health and activity levels to determine if he can meet your expectations. He will walk you through your options, explain the details of the FUT procedure, and answer any questions you may have. You will have an opportunity to view extensive before and after photos.
Dr. Min will assess factors such as amount of donor hair, extent of hair loss, hair type, hair density and scalp health. He will share and explain his opinions with you about what is most appropriate for your hair and what results you can expect. Together you will decide on the details and timing of your procedure.
Finally, Dr. Min will make sure you know exactly what will happen on the day of your procedure, how to care for your new hair, and what you can expect in the months and years to follow.
Safety & Risks of Hair Transplant Surgery
Our approach at Newvue is always to put our patients’ safety above all other concerns, and Dr. Min is a recognized expert with an impeccable track record for hair transplants. We have invested in absolutely state of the art tools, and our on-site surgical suite is one of the first in the region to be fully approved under the stringent new safety standards.
Hair Transplants are very common and safe procedure. Nonetheless, we feel it is important that all our patients fully understand the risk associated with this—or any—surgical procedure. The most important thing to know is that Dr. Min and Newvue will stand by you should any complications arise and do everything we can to help you achieve your desired result.
Risks associated with Hair Transplants include:
- Reaction to Anesthesia: Some patients experience an adverse reaction to anesthesia that may result in nausea or vomiting, allergic reactions and in very rare cases death. Be sure to discuss any medical allergies with your surgeon.
- Infection: as with any surgical procedure, there is a risk of infection. Infection will generally occur within days or weeks of your procedure, and in most cases can be treated with medication. In rare cases, and additional surgery may be required to treat severe infections
- Bleeding & Hematoma: Some patients are more prone to bruising than others and, in extreme cases, may experience excessive bruising, bleeding or skin death.
- Hair loss: Some patients may experience temporary or permanent loss of hair in or around the treated area.
Your Hair Transplant Procedure
We will do everything in our power to help you feel informed and relaxed on the day of your procedure. After you arrive at our Bellevue office, you will meet with Dr. Min and with your technician team. Once any questions you have are answered, you will be given medication to help you relax.
It is not usually necessary to shave the scalp for a FUT procedure.
You will be brought into the surgical suite, where you will be prepped for surgery and given a local anesthetic to numb the scalp. Surgery usually takes 2-4 hours.
Your head will be wrapped in a semi permeable dressing to protect the transplanted follicles as the incisions heal. You’ll be able to return home shortly after the procedure, but you’ll want to be sure to arrange for someone to pick you up. Dr. Min and your technicians will advise you on caring for your scalp and new hair.
After Hair Transplant Procedure
The recovery from hair transplant surgery is relatively straightforward, but the first several days are very important. You may experience some sensitivity or mild pain in the donor and recipient site, as well as some itching (don’t scratch!). You will have a semipermeable dressing on your head to allow for seepage. This will need to be changed daily for the first several days. You should avoid sun exposure as well as any strenuous exercise or contact sports until the dressing comes off (7-10 days). Shampooing will be important to dislodge any scabs that may adhere to the hair shaft, as they can increase the risk of losing the newly transplanted follicles.
You can expect to see many (sometimes all) of the transplanted hairs fall out within the first 7-10 days. Do not be alarmed! This is called “shock loss,” and is normal. New hair will begin to grow within 1-3 months of the procedure.
You may notice the effects of the transplant right away, but do not be discouraged by “Shock loss.” Over the next several months, your new hair will begin to grow and thicken. The scars from the donor area will heal and be easily covered by even short hair.
Dr. Min and the Newvue staff are always available to help you with any questions or concerns you may have, during your recovery and after. We want to ensure that you are completely thrilled with your new look, and we’ll consider you our patient for life.