What is Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)?
Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) represents the latest evolution in the field of hair restoration surgery. This procedure is based on the use of surgical microscopes to extract hair follicles “one-by-one” from any donor area. In fact, FUE allows us to take hairs from the scalp, the sideburns, the beard, the chest and the lower abdominal wall. The procedure can take from two to six hours depending on the size of the area you wish to restore.
Why choose the FUE hair restoration treatment?
With a FUE procedure it is possible to transfer between 1000-1500 follicular units in a single session. It is necessary to shave the whole side and back of your head in order to carry out the treatment.
This means FUE is the correct procedure to:
- Cover a limited area of the scalp, such as the crown (top) or the frontal line, or the face – such as the beard and eyebrows in a single session.
- Cover a larger area but only when you are happy to complete the restoration process in more than a single session.
- Treat other types of alopecia, such as triangular alopecia and traction alopecia
Is FUE hair restoration treatment right for me?
FUE is the right procedure for you if one of the following applies:
- You need an eyebrow transplant, sideburns or beard transplant.
- You need to cover a scar from previous facial or hair transplant surgery.
- You need a top up following a previous hair transplant surgery.
- You suffer from immune suppression, connective tissue disease and you are aware of being at high risk of infection or producing bad scars.
- You wish or need to keep your hair shaved at all times (less than 2 cm) for personal, religious or professional reasons.
- You do not have enough donor hair on your scalp and need to take hair from other areas of the body.
What happens during a FUE Procedure?
You will be treated in our Harley Street Surgical Theatre, which is fully equipped with a high-tech suite designed specifically for hair transplant patients. This state-of-the-art theatre is compliant with the Care and Quality Commission (CQC) protocols for safe and accurate monitoring before and during your procedure.
You will be offered the option of taking a mild sedative if you are nervous or find it hard to lie still. The procedure will be performed under local anaesthetic so you stay wide-awake and the rest of the procedure should be free from discomfort. You can even talk to your surgeon, watch a DVD or listen to music.
The procedure is completed in 4 consecutive steps:
- Preparing: Hairs will be shaved down to 3-4 millimetres and the whole scalp prepared with antiseptic solution.
- Local anaesthesia: We will use a cocktail of lidocaine and adrenaline with a “tumescent” technique that will make the procedure pain-free.
- Extraction: Dr Cotrufo uses the highest microscopic magnification of 6.5x to harvest hair follicles. The extraction is robotic-assisted by using a punch of 0.5 to 0.95 mm in diameter. This corresponds to the size of the natural hair follicles containing up to 4 hairs each. This represents the most advanced technique of hair transplant and allows the harvesting of about 1000 hairs in just 3 hours.
- Implantation: Dr Cotrufo views each hair transplant as “absolutely unique”. The hair will be implanted wherever required, reproducing the natural direction of that very specific area. Hairs will also be “packed” in different numbers in order to reproduce the perfect density needed to achieve a natural result.
What happens after the hair surgery treatment?
You will be able to go home straight away but we recommend not driving on the day of your procedure. You will have full written medical prescription and instructions on how to take care of your scalp and your ‘new’ hair. This will also include the contact numbers of our clinic and the date for your next follow up appointment.