By Dr. Ramanjanayalu, Dermatology
Hair transplant refers to a surgical technique which transfers hair follicles from one part of the body to another part which has minimal hair growth. The site from where the hair follicles are taken is usually called donor site, while the site where the follicles are grafted is called the recipient site.
The procedure usually starts with the cleansing your scalp. The procedure is performed under general or localized anesthesia. There are two types of hair transplant techniques. One of these techniques is selected by the doctor according to your specific requirements. These are:
1. Follicular Unit Strip Surgery (FUSS)-
The doctor starts by removing around a 6-10 inch skin strip from the back of the head. After that, the surgeon divides the entire strip into 1000 or 1500 follicle grafts. The nature and the number of grafts usually depend on the quality of your hair and the size of the area where the transplant is to be done.
2. Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)-
In the case of Follicular Unit Extraction technique (FUE), the doctor shaves the scalp and removes the hair follicles individually from the site. The rest of the procedure is similar to the follicular unit strip surgery technique.
The entire surgical procedure can take around 4-8 hours but the duration can vary depending on the size of the area where the grafting is to be done.
After the surgery is done, the scalp may be very soft and tender. You might need medications to ease the pain along with an anti-inflammatory drug and an antibiotic depending on the type of the procedure.
The usual recovery process may take around 2-3 weeks after which the grafted hair tends to fall and new hair starts growing naturally. People who undergo this surgery may observe around 70 -80% hair growth 6-7 months after the surgery.