Hair transplant surgery can be a great solution for people suffering from hair loss who want to restore their hairline and density on the scalp. But before undertaking hair transplant surgery, it is vitally important that patients are properly informed about hair transplant surgery.
Most surgeons seeing a patient with excellent donor hair would deem them a prime candidate for FUT/FUG (donor strip) surgery. What can patients expect from this extreme surgery?
What is Follicular Unit Grafting (FUG) and Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT)?
Healthy hair follicles are cut from the back of the scalp in a long thin strip of skin. The donor follicles are dissected into individual follicle grafts under a microscope, each containing 1-4 hairs and implanted into the desired area of scalp.
Not so fast…
Unfortunately, FUG/FUT comes with side affects you need to know about:
- Down-time for recovery is approx. 4 weeks
- Patients may experience shock loss (loss of hair, usually in the donor recipient area due to trauma to the extracted follicles)
- Painful throbbing in the scalp as patients recover
- A long linear scar from ear to ear in the back of the head
Pictured left is an example of the long linear scar from FUT/FUG surgery.
This was taken during corrective FUE surgery transplanting follicles to the scar to cover up the big scar.
What’s so bad about a scar?
If you want to wear your hair short in the future, the scar will be very prominent. In fact, patients who have had FUT/FUG surgery often seek future FUE transplant surgery into the existing scar to repair it (see picture).
Why we don’t do FUT/FUG
Dr Peter Paraskevas does not perform FUT/FUG surgery as he does not want to scar his patients. We only perform FUE surgery at Melbourne Hair Transplant Clinic, and the doctor is hands-on in both the extraction and the incision/implantation of the grafts/follicles.
Who is really doing the hair transplant surgery?
For patients weighing the pros and cons FUT/FUG, it’s important to ask who actually performs the surgery. In most cases the surgeon excises the long strip of donor skin and follicles from the back of the patient’s scalp, then doctor exits the theatre - his/her job is done! Then the surgical technicians take over dissecting the grafts under the microscope and implanting them into the recipient area. Who is really performing the surgery - the surgeon or the technician? During FUE (follicular unit extraction) at our clinic the surgeon is present and active during the entire process.
The cost of the procedure can be a significant factor for patients in the decision-making process when deciding between hair transplant techniques, but of paramount importance is the quality of the procedure itself. Will FUT/FUG really give patients the results they want?
What about surgery overseas?
Seeking hair transplant surgery overseas comes with several risks. Of particular concern is the lack of follow-up, unless you fly back to the clinic wherever it might be in the world for follow-up appointments. We take aftercare very seriously to ensure patients receive the very best care and advice. We follow-up with patients several times up to 18 months post-surgery, until the patient’s grafts reach their full growth potential.
Why we recommend FUE over FUT/FUG
- Follicular Unit Extraction is much less invasive: no strip harvesting of donor follicles.
- FUE leaves no unsightly, tell-tale linear scar on the back of the scalp. When performed correctly and follicles are removed evenly, FUE punch scars can be virtually undetectable.
- Recovery is faster and less painful than FUT/FUG.
- It makes the most of healthy follicles, maximising donor hair for harvesting.
- In FUT/FUG hair transplant surgery, hair follicles are cut from the back of the scalp in a long thin strip of skin.
- This “strip harvesting” leaves a long, linear scar – which will be very prominent if you keep your hair short at the back of your head.
- Dr Peter Paraskevas does not perform FUT/FUG surgery as he does not want to scar his patients.
- To find out more book an appointment with Dr Paraskevas.