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Hair Transplant Surgery - What Options Do You Have When Considering Hair Transplant Surgery?

Aug 17, 2007
Hair Transplant surgery is one of the most popular cosmetic procedures chosen by men today.

A hair transplant is when hair in an area that is not prone to balding (such as the sides and back of your head) is taken and transplanted into the balding or thinning areas. This hair then continues to grow throughout your lifetime and can give you a full head of natural looking hair.

A hair transplant is the only real permanent solution for hair loss and balding. However it is a big decision to make and you should have all the facts before deciding to have hair transplant surgery.

So just what are your surgery options? Here's a brief review of the different types of procedures offered by hair transplant surgeons. (Note that not all surgeons offer all options.)

Options For Hair Transplant Surgery:

In general there are 2 types of transplantation surgery: The FUSS and the FUE method.

Not all doctors perform the FUE method as it is fairly new and much more time-consuming (as well as expensive for the patient).

Some surgeons also offer scar repair surgery (which is surgery to improve the look of a previous hair transplant scar) as well as hair transplant repair (for example to fill in density on a formerly poor transplant or to redo the hairline, etc.) Again, not all surgeons perform this type of surgery so you might have to look around for specialists in each area.

Whichever procedure you choose will also depend on the extent of your personal needs. Your doctor can inform you of the risks, advantages and disadvantages of each method.

#1) FUSS - Follicular Unit Strip Surgery

A narrow strip of hair is taken from the back of your scalp (where you aren't prone to thinning). The grafts are then implanted into the balding area and most will continue to grow throughout your lifetime. The donor area is closed up with sutures or staples. These will be removed in several days or absorbed.

Depending on several factors (including the skill of your surgeon), only minimal scarring will occur in the donor area and approximate downtime can run from 1 week to a month, depending on the situation.

One of the main advantages to FUSS is that it allows many grafts to be transplanted in one session (i.e. up to 4000) so the results can be dramatic. While your surgeon can recommend which method is best for you, in general, the FUSS method works well for medium to large areas of balding.

#2) FUE - Follicular Unit Extraction

This is a new technique that a few surgeons are starting to offer. It mainly consists of harvesting each hair follicule separately from the back and sides of the head (that aren't prone to thinning). Then each follicule is transplanted into the balding area. There is no scalpel cutting or any deep surgery with this method.

The scarring tends to be less when compared to the FUSS method. Also, according to some surgeons, the recovery time can sometimes be shorter with the FUE method (because there isn't the deep surgery as with the FUSS).

While your surgeon can recommend which method is best for you, in general, the FUE method works well for those people who do not wish to have a scar, don't need a lot of grafts, or who want to wear their hair very short.

3) Other Procedures - Scalp Reduction

This surgery is much less common and fewer surgeons still offer it. A scalp reduction is where areas of balding are surgically removed with the rest of the scalp skin pulled together to eliminate the balding skin. Depending on the size of the balding area, this is usually done in stages.

This is probably the most expensive procedure and can run you into the tens of thousands of dollars. Plus there's also risks like tightness of your scalp leading to thinning of the skin and improper scarring.


Whatever you decide to do, it's important to talk to your doctor before making any decisions about your health. Hair transplant surgery is always evolving and improving so it's also important to interview as many surgeons as you can to get a good idea of what each can do for you.

Keep in mind that doing your research beforehand can ensure you get the most amazing, natural results that you want.
About the Author
Vienna Miller writes for Hair Transplant Review - a patient oriented website covering the transplantation process.

For more information on hair transplants including tips on recovery, procedures and choosing the best doctor, visit:

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