Hair Transplant Scars

A hair transplant is the only permanent solution for hair loss at the moment, yet it is genuine surgery in spite of some advertising to the contrary. Like all other surgical procedures scars are inevitable, but their severity depends on the type of hair replacement surgery you get and the skill level of the plastic surgeon who is working with the remaining hairs left on your head.

These are two main types of hair transplants available today:

  • Strip incision (FUT)
  • Follicular Unit (single hair) Extraction

Both of these transplant types leave very different types of scars.

Strip Incision

Hair-bearing skin cut from the back of your head, the donor area, is a strip incision hair transplant. The strip is then cut up into hair grafts with one, two or three hairs. A small surgical punch in the scalp is used to transplant these hairs to balding areas, leaving you with a thin scar at the back of your head from one ear to the other. So if you decide to have a hair transplant that uses strip incision, then you’re definitely going to have some scarring in the back of your head.

This can put limitations on the types of hairstyles you can wear. If you wear your hair in a very short buzz cut, the scar will be visible. A good hair transplant surgeon can minimize the size of this scar, but it’s almost impossible to make it just vanish.

A new type of hair transplant procedure called the Trichophytic closure can improve results. It involves a the donor scar being tidied up and then overlapped so that the skin heals without a gap. When used properly, this method can make the scar almost invisible.

Follicular Unit Extraction (Ultra Micro grafting)

Around the mid 1990s the FUE procedure became popular because of the good results it gave. Before FUE, hair transplant surgeons used a 5mm punch to remove grafts of 20 to 30 hairs to transplant, leaving thousands of hair transplant patients with the unnatural “dolls hair” effect. Over time the grafts got smaller, and now FUE grafts are performed with a punch as small as 0.7mm, meaning hairs can be transplanted individually. This means the results of a hair transplant can be 100% natural looking.

The other different between certain types FUE hair transplants and strip incision transplants is the doctor doesn’t need to remove an entire strip of skin from the donor area. He or she can use the tiny 0.7mm to 1.0mm punch to remove the hair grafts straight from the donor site – and transplant the grafts into the recipient (bald) areas.

Using the FUE method doesn’t mean that you will have no scars; it results in thousands of tiny scars instead of one large straight one. Using the FUE method also means just a week or two for the small holes to heal. FUE scars have been documented as very difficult to see – except when the hair is buzzed down to the skin.

Both types of hair transplantation have loyal hordes of fans. It’s up to you to make an informed choice about which method is best for you.

Another thing: either of type of transplant could access body hair transplant to cover up the scar(s), putting chest, back or leg hair to good use. Very clever eh?

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