What Is A FUT Hair Transplant?
FUT hair transplant method was the first-ever technique after Dr. Orentreich’s first attempts at hair transplantation in the 1950s. This method is best used for androgenetic alopecia, namely, male-pattern baldness. There are two main hair transplant methods: FUT ( Follicular Unit Transplantation ), and FUE ( Follicular Unit Extraction ). The major difference between these two methods is the way your doctor will collect hair grafts from the donor area.
In FUT hair transplant procedure, your doctor will have to cut a strip of skin from your donor area. Your doctor will usually consider the back of your neck as a donor area because the hair in this area is most resistant to DHT hormone, which is responsible for male-pattern baldness, together with a genetic predisposition. FUT hair transplantation method may not be as developed and advance as the FUE method and its variations, but still, it was the first professional hair transplant method that enabled doctors to collect and transplant the patients’ hair follicles. It also allowed for natural-looking hair unlike the other previous attempts of hair transplantation. Thanks to this method, people with severe hair loss had a chance to benefit from a permanent and effective baldness treatment.
FUT Hair Transplant Procedure
In FUT, your doctor will remove a strip ok skin with hair follicles from the back of your scalp, donor area, and the rest is more or less the same as the FUE method. This method usually allows your doctor to collect a higher number of grafts higher than the FUE method, which is an obvious disadvantage, especially for the ones with severe hair loss. Here’s how the FUT procedure is performed:
- Your doctor will first prepare you for the procedure. They will draw your hairline, decide the donor area and the number of grafts to collect. They may also take your photos to compare the results with before and after photos.
- They will then numb the donor and recipient areas so you will not feel pain throughout the whole procedure.
- Your doctor will also shave the donor area to better see the areas and conduct the surgery smoothly.
- When the donor area is ready, your doctor will cut a strip of skin from your scalp and then close your scalp with sutures. This strip will be kept in a place where your doctor can easily collect the hair follicles.
- Next, they will harvest the hair follicles into the recipient area in a way that will give your hair a natural look.
- Your doctor will use bandages to protect the scalp and help it recover. It may take up to 10 days for the sutures to be gone. But it will take for the donor area to completely heal as long as 2 weeks. And you will see the full result in about 9 months to 1 year.
Who Is Eligible For A FUT Hair Transplant?
Everyone with balding issues can have FUT hair transplant method. However, men with androgenic alopecia make the best candidates for the FUT technique as a bald man with M-shaped hairline will most benefit from this technique as the hair follicles taken from the donor area will be resistant to hair loss with this pattern. Male-pattern hair loss is caused by a combination of genetic susceptibility and hormones, particularly DHT. As the donor area is resistant to the effects of the DHT hormone, this technique will provide the patient with permanent results. If a disease such as alopecia areata is causing hair loss, then the FUT procedure will not succeed.
Other important factors to be a good candidate for FUT hair transplant are age, hair thickness, and hair color. People who are younger than 25 years of age should not have a hair transplant as their hair loss may continue and their hairlines may go over change. People with bad hair follicle density may not achieve the desired hair volume. People whose hair colors are similar to their skin color get better results with the procedure as there will be a little color contrast.
Benefits And Advantages Of FUT Hair Transplant
Even though the FUE technique is considered to be far more sophisticated than the FUT method, it still has some advantages and benefits. Some benefits and advantages of FUT hair transplant are as follows:
- In FUT hair transplant, your doctor can collect more grafts than the FUE method so people with severe hair loss may benefit from this method to a greater extent. Otherwise, the hair volume may come out low and balding areas may not be covered well.
- FUT hair transplant will provide a speedy procedure as compared to the FUE method.
- FUE hair transplant will be more costly as your doctor will take the grafts one by one and it will take longer. However, your doctor will save time in FUT hair transplant.
Risks and disadvantages of FUT hair transplant
FUT is more invasive than FUE because your doctor will cut the donor area. So there will be a higher risk of complications, though still low. Possible risks and disadvantages of FUT hair transplant are as follows:
- Because your surgeon will cut a strip of skin from your scalp during the graft extraction stage, there will be a permanent scar behind your neck. Plus your surgeon will have to cover this area with sutures.
- As there will be cut in the donor area, the risk of post-operative bleeding and pain is higher but still low.
- There may be numbness in the areas of surgery for a few months after the procedure.
- As your doctor will cut, the areas of surgery will take longer to heal.
- The risk of post-operative infection and inflammation is high but still low as the cut will not be big or deep.
- There may be some swelling and edema in the areas of surgery.
FUT Hair Transplant Before After Photos
Here are FUT hair transplant before after photos and examples.Click here to see how step-by-step hair transplantation is done.