Close up photo of clean healthy man's hair without furfur

By the age of 35, two-thirds of American men will experience hair loss. Men aren’t alone. More than 50% of women will experience noticeable hair loss in their lifetime.

If you suffer from hair loss, you have options.

Over-the-counter and prescription medications are commonly used but often without real results. Hair transplants have become more popular and have a higher success rate.

Are you considering hair restoration?

Keep reading for information on how it works and what you should expect in the process.

How Does Hair Restoration Work?

Hair restoration, or hair transplants, involves taking hair you have and transferring it to an area of your body where you don’t have hair. Hair is typically harvested from the back of your head but can also be taken from other areas of your body.

There are two types of permanent hair restoration: FUT and FUE.

Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT)

With FUT, also known as strip harvesting, a surgeon begins by removing a piece of your scalp about six to ten inches long.

The surgeon and members of the transplant team separate your scalp strip into smaller pieces with a scalpel. They split the strip into as many as 2,000 smaller pieces, called grafts. Some of these grafts may only contain one hair.

Then, using a needle or blade, your surgeon makes small holes in your scalp for the transplanted hair.

The hairs from the removed piece of your scalp are inserted into the puncture holes. This process is called grafting.

Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)

Recently, FUE has become a more popular option. The process takes longer, but the results are superior to FUT and have fewer side effects.

They begin the procedure by shaving the hair on the back of your head. Rather than taking an entire strip, the surgeon takes individual hair follicles out of the skin on your scalp.

As with the FUT procedure, the surgeon makes small holes in your scalp and grafts the follicles into the holes.

Recovery Time

FUT and FUE can take anywhere from several hours to several days to complete. This depends on the amount of work performed by your surgeon.

Once the procedure is complete, your surgeon will remove your bandages to check for swelling. If you have significant swelling, your surgeon may inject Triamcinolone into your scalp.

You will likely feel pain and soreness at both the transplant and harvest sites. For the next few days, your surgeon may prescribe:

  • Pain medications, such as Acetaminophen
  • Antibiotics
  • Anti-inflammatories
  • Medications to stimulate hair growth

This is to alleviate any ailments you might feel to help the recovery go smoother.

How Effective is Hair Restoration?

Hair restoration can be a highly effective procedure. Up to 80% of the transplanted hair will fully grow back in a few months.

Like regular hair, the transplanted hair will thin over time. For lasting results, your surgeon may recommend you come back for touch-up procedures.

Your Questions on Hair Restoration Answered

It’s important to understand that neither procedure is guaranteed to be successful.

Talk to your doctor or a transplant surgeon before you decide on a hair restoration procedure. They will know whether you are a good candidate and help you decide your best option.

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