Hair transplant allows both men and women to get rid of hair loss and restore natural hair growth and density. This minimally invasive surgical procedure is effective and comfortable; it does not require a long rehabilitation period. It is used to restore hair on the head, in the area of eyebrows, beards and even sideburns.
The procedure is carried out according to the most modern methods. The most famous and effective are the FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) method hair transplant and the DHI method. The transplanted hair has a natural look and the patients have no scars and unnatural hair plugs.
FUE method hair transplant
Hair transplant techniques and technologies have been evolving for over 30 years. Today, the most advanced hair transplant method is the FUE method. It was first developed and tested in the early 2000s. Of course, until today, this method has been constantly developing and refined, but the basic principles of FUE hair transplantation still same. This method is now used in most clinics around the world.
The main advantages of using the FUE method for hair transplantation are that; it is minimally invasive, does not leave visible scars and does not require long rehabilitation.
The FUE method includes several different hair transplant techniques. Depending on the instruments used, the surgeon can apply different methods, thus increasing the success of the entire surgery. There are several basic techniques:
- Classic FUE (via micro motors)
It is a classic technique used in hair transplant surgeries in clinics around the world.
FUE means; follicular unit extraction. In classic FUE method hair grafts are extracted from the donor area as follicular units (primarily from the nape area),and are transplanted into the incisions that have been created in the recepient area. In classic FUE method this incisions are made with metal slit tools. This channel openening process is a very important for a the operation success since the natural hair growth and the density mostly depends on this stage.
- Sapphire FUE (FUE performed with Sapphire blades)
Sapphire FUE method means the use of sapphire incison blades, which are used insead of metal silits in order to open smaller micro channels for transplantation. This allows to minimize scab formation and speed up the recovery process. Sapphire FUE is mostly used to transplant a large number of hair follicles in one session. In addition, with the use of sapphire blades are the healing of the transplanted area is faster.
- DHI method (FUE performed with Choi implants)
Thanks to the use of a special implanter pen, known as Choi Pen, hair grafts are implanted directly to the recepient area without creating incisions.
The DHI technique takes more time for each session and fewer hair follicles can be transplanted at one time. For this reason, DHI is often used to create a perfect hairline or to correct small bald areas.
Because the recipient site does not have to be shaved while using implanter pens, with DHI method unshaven hair transplants can be performed.
Painless hair transplant
Patients will be comfortable during hair transplant. Since the hair transplant operations are performed under local anesthesia the procedure itself does not cause discomfort. However, for sensitive patients, hair transplantation can be performed with sedation. The sedative and its dosage are determined by the anesthesiologist throughout the operation.
Anesthesia and sedation: what’s the difference?
Local anesthesia is the most popular and commonly used form of pain relief. The bottom line is to minimize the sensitivity of a specific area of the body.
Sedation helps to relieve the patient’s psycho-emotional stress, relieve fear and panic. In this case, the patient is conscious, sees and understands everything, but does not feel pain; due to this they are dulled.
Anesthesia and sedation are completely safe, and the latter is widely used even for children. All drugs are used only under the supervision of an anesthesiologist. Hair transplant is a lengthy procedure, and anesthesia and sedation will help to make it painless and comfortable.
Hair transplant process
Hair transplantation procedure includes pre-operation, operation and postoperative period.
Before the hair transplant procedure, the patient’s general health condition and suitability for hair transplantation is evaluated by medical doctor. The individuals who are eligible for the operation, schedule their appointment for the operation. A week before from the operation the patients receive the instructions of, how to prepare the operation and what to avoid before the operation.
Hair transplant operation has 4 stages
Extraction and preparation of donor hair follicles
Collecting hair grafts from donor area
Preperation hair grafts for transplantation
Creation of micro-incisions
Transplantation of grafts into the prepared area
Extraction and preparation of donor hair follicles:
This is the initial stage of hair transplantation. The key to the success of the entire operation is creating a special plan for each patient of a high-quality and viable transplant material. At this stage, the doctor will extract a sufficient number of grafts from the pre-planned area. Micro-holes will appear in the area of the donor collection, which will heal within five days. The hairline within transferred line will not suffer from hair loss anymore and will look natural.
Taking out the grafts from the donor area, the doctor places them in a container filled with a special solution. This will preserve the material without touching its natural biological characteristics. In addition, such storage will protect the grafts from the external environment.
Preparation of the recipient area and grafts transplantation
This stage of hair transplant can take a long time. The previously prepared grafts are transferred to the marked area of the hair transplant. For this, the expert uses a special tool. With this instrument, she/he makes micro-punctures in the baldness area, which the prepared follicles will be implanted into.
This stage is the most important stage of the operation and requires expertise. In order for the hair to be transplanted to grow in a natural appearance, it is important that the channels are opened properly and the hair follicles are transplanted in accordance with the direction and angle of the person’s natural hair.
What else is important to know?
- Hair transplant surgery can be performed on patients between the ages of 20-65 generally.
- On average, the preparation for the operation, the hair transplant itself and the rehabilitation can take as little as 3 days.
- The duration of the operation depends on the volume of the transplanted hair follicles, but on average it takes 6-8 hours.
- Hair transplant surgery is performed y-under the supervision of medical doctor and performed by a medical team of hair transplant specialists.
- Hair transplant operation rooms requires a sterile environment and can be performed only in the polyclinics, medical centers or hospitals authorized by the Ministry of Health.
- It will be possible to evaluate the final result of the procedure only after 8-12 months from the date of the operation.
Hair Transplant Process
the main stages of the procedure
Before the Operation
Before starting hair transplant operation, every patient goes through a preparation stage. It usually consists of a consultation and preliminary preparation.
Preparation for hair transplant surgery begins with a consultation at the Hairpol clinic. To obtain complete information about the state of the patient’s health, the doctor conducts not only an external examination, but also performs all the necessary tests. As a rule, before the transplant procedure, the patient takes a blood test in clinic.
At the consultation, the surgeon can identify patient’s hair loss stage, the condition of nape donor area and number of the grafts to be transplanted. Based on all the obtained data, the doctor selects an the effective hair transplant method. Also, in preparation for a hair transplant, the doctor provides recommendations that the patient must follow within the time frame established before the surgery.
During the first visit to the Hairpol clinic, the doctor will necessarily examine not only the area for future transplantation, but also the donor area. Before starting the operation, it is important to assess the amount of donor material and the possibility of extracting it. After making a diagnosis and determining the number of grafts to be transplanted, the doctor begins to form a new hairline.
Also, at the first consultation, the patient is provided with a preliminary estimate of future costs. It is calculated depending on the chosen technique of the transplant, the number of transplanted grafts (hair follicles) and additional procedures (if necessary).
For patients living abroad, wishing to get treatment for hair loss at the Harpol clinic, a remote consultation service is provided. In this case, the patient will send newest photos of the baldness zones so that the doctor can determine the degree of baldness and choose the right treatment. It should be remembered that this form of consultation is considered preliminary and estimated. Only a personal consultation is required for the final diagnosis and selection of a hair transplant method.
After the doctor sets the date for the operation, the preparation stage begins. As a rule, the schedule of operations in the clinic is drawn up several months in advance. Before surgery, doctor will recommend limiting or excluding certain foods and medications. Also, the patient should inform the doctor about the presence of skin diseases, if any. The doctor always makes recommendations in advance, including for further rehabilitation, which can often include taking antibiotics and medications to relieve possible pain.
The patient should refrain from smoking and drinking alcohol about a week before the operation. The doctor may advise you to stop taking any medications that may adversely affect the course of the operation. Also, in accordance with the instructions of the doctor, it is necessary to adjust the usual diet or intake of vitamins.
A few days before the transplant, it is recommended to rest and sleep more, to refuse to perform active physical exercises.
On the day of surgery, the patient needs to wash hair and take a shower. As a rule, patients can have breakfast on the day of the operation in the usual way. 2 hours before the start of the operation, fluid and food intake must be stopped. When choosing clothes, one should give preference to one that is not removed over the head, which will minimize friction and discomfort for the scalp when using bandaging. The clothing itself should be comfortable.
This is the beginning of the hair transplant process. The operation is performed under local anesthesia or sedation in a comfortable environment and consists of two main stages
After the assistants treat the donor area with antiseptics, the doctor will begin extracting the grafts. Hair in the back of the head and on the temples, as a rule, does not loss in male pattern baldness. Therefore, they become the main material for transplantation. It is not the hair shafts that are transplanted to a new place from the donor zone, but their follicles, in other words, the roots that later produce hair growth. They are located in the scalp at a depth of 3-4 mm.
The technique of extracting the follicles is determined by the method of the operation. With the FUE method, individual follicular units are extracted one by one without incisions and sutures. This method is considered to be gentler and low traumatic. After hair transplantation using the FUE method or its sub types, there are no scars and visible traces of the surgery, and healing is faster. Donor material is usually extracted from the patient’s temporal or occipital area. If these areas cannot be used, the doctor extracts the follicles from the beard or chest.
Next, the extracted grafts are sorted using micro tweezers and prepared for the next stage of transplantation. Sometimes the grafts are split into separate hairs. This is necessary for transplanting them to the front of the head, in the hairline zone.
The next stage of the operation is the hair transplant itself. The doctor places the follicles in the balding area. Usually, grafts are implanted into the skin using surgical micro tweezers into pre-formed canals. These channels are formed in advance with a special tool, a micro blade. With this tool, the doctor makes a puncture between the existing hairs at the same angle at which natural hair grows. This helps to achieve the most natural result. The number of channels depends on the number of grafts. On average, a doctor makes about 2-3 thousand micro punctures. Then the grafts are transplanted manually using micro tweezers. There is another transplant method using the Choi instrument. With this method, hair transplant is performed in one touch without preliminary micro punctures.
The main task of the operation is not to recreate the lost amount of hair with mathematical precision, but to create a natural looking and sufficient volume of hair. If the resource of the donor zone allows, the hair transplant operation can be performed several times.
Usually, the entire hair transplant procedure takes 4-8 hours depending on the size of the transplanted area. If the area of baldness is significant, then the patient may need 2-3 operations with an interval of at least a year.
The patient is conscious throughout the entire operation. During prolonged surgery, the doctor and assistants take short breaks so that the patient can rest and stretch.
After the Operations
Modern hair transplant methods are comfortable and therefore do not require long rehabilitation. However, some points are still worth considering. .
The transplanted follicles after surgery are not fixed with a special bandage. They are held in the scalp by natural “glue”, called a fibrin. However, the bandage will still be done, but below the hairline. This is done in order to avoid possible facial swelling. The patient can remove this bandage the very next day after the operation. The FUE method is comfortable and most often has no possible complications. However, each organism can react differently, so your doctor may prescribe a mild pain reliever if needed.
The second day after the operation, the patient must visit the clinic again. There, the doctor will conduct an examination and prescribe additional procedures (plasma or laser therapy) to speed up healing. The doctor will give the necessary recommendations on how to care for the transplanted hair in the following days. The success of the operation ultimately depends on proper care. In addition, the clinic staff will tell you how to properly care for your hair and teach you how to wash it. The patient will also receive a set of special cosmetics for scalp care, which will speed up healing.
The patient can return to his usual way of life on the second day after the operation.
After a hair transplant, the patient should take very care in providing hair care. For 15 days after the operation, it is necessary to carry out daily care as taught in the clinic. In the first two weeks after the operation, it is prohibited to exert any strong mechanical effect on the transplanted hair due to the risk of an infectious process and the fact that the hair is still susceptible to easy loss from the canals. Also, in the first week after the operation, the patient should refrain from any physical activity (sports, carrying weights, sex, etc.) that can cause sweating. This will reduce the risk of inflammation and speed up the scalp healing process. Also, during this time, alcohol is not recommended, as this can cause additional swelling. Usually, after 3-5 days, the red dots on the transplanted area heal and disappear. The donor area heals in about 5-7 days.
Hair will begin to grow 2-3 months after surgery. With transplantation using modern methods, the percentage of hair survival is about 97-98%. The doctor and the patient will be able to evaluate the final result about 9-12 months after the operation. The transplanted hair of the patients has a natural and healthy appearance. The result of the transplant will depend on the correct post-operative care and the patient’s compliance with all recommendations.
Additional donor material sources for hair transplantation
Sometimes it happens that there is not enough donor material on the back of the patient’s head. In such cases, the doctor may suggest collecting hair follicles from other parts of the body.
The structure of the beard hair is ideal for hair transplantation in cases where there is not enough donor material in the occipital area. In addition, beard grafts are suitable for transplantation into the frontal and upper part of the head, as they provide the best volume of hair in the transplanted area due to their structure.
Body hair transplant
In cases where donor material on the back of the head and beard is not enough, body hair can become an alternative source of grafts for hair transplantation. The most commonly used hair is chest hair. They have a similar structure to the hair in a beard.
Perks & Benefits
Advantages of the FUE method