WHAT IS HAIR LOSS?
Hair loss is also known baldness, can be defined as a loss of hair from part of the head. It can also be described as a transformation of hair itself.
WHAT CAUSES HAIR LOSS?
It is reality that men have more tendency to lose hair compared to women, however hair loss especially hair thinning are also common in women. There are quite a lot of factors causing hair loss in which the main reasons briefly consist of heredity, aging, vitamin deficiency, medical conditions, stress, hormonal changes and genetic factors.
The only proven method is to reduce hair loss is to use shampoos containing minoxidil (rogaine) The other methods are yet to be proven by modern science.
WHAT IS HAIR TRANSPLANTATION?
Hair grafts are simply the roots of hair which are used for transplanting hair follicles from a balding region to a recipient region . Hair transplantation is a surgical technique that requires the insertion of human hair into the scalp in order to cover baldness. Hair transplantation is considered the only permanent solution to regain your hair.
CAUSES OF HAIR LOSS
Majority of the hair loss in men associated with male pattern baldness or androgenic alopecia. Even though there are other reasons behind men losing hair including highly stressful events, severe diseases, reaction to particular medical treatments, heredity proved to be the most responsible cause of hair loss in men. Men with male pattern baldness are literally inheriting hair follicles with a genetic sensitive to Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) which is a derivative of testosterone. Hair follicles which are sensitive to DHT start to minimize resulting in reducing the lifetime of each hair follicle affected. Consequently, these affected hair follicles stop generating a decent looking hair.
Usual male pattern baldness is based on the appearance and pattern of the hair loss, as well as a detailed medical history, including questions regarding the predominance of hair loss in the family members. MediExpert specialist can examine the scalp under densitometer which is a handheld magnification device used to examine the miniaturization of the hair shaft in order to evaluate the degree of the hair loss. Some clinics might suggest an expensive hair analysis or a scalp biopsy in order to diagnose your hair loss. It is highly recommended to avoid these clinics as there is no requirement for these analysis to be taken.
DIFFERENT TYPES AND DEGREE OF MALE HAIR LOSS
It is important to understand the extent of the hair loss progress while considering an appropriate treatment. There might be a period when you have to transmit this information to a specialist which you will be expecting a preliminary diagnosis in turn. It is also crucial to protect yourself against misdiagnoses of your condition. Majority of the hair loss specialists use Norwood Scale in order to determine the degree male hair loss which the illustration presented below.
WHY SHOULD I HAVE A HAIR TRANSPLANTATION?
Hair is a vital part of describing the identity of both men and women. A good looking hair could make you look younger, more healthy, more attractive and can assist on restoring your confidence. It can also provide a boost at work and social situations. As losing hair have become very common in today’s stressful world, thanks to the state of the art FUE and DHI hair transplantation techniques everybody has now a chance to overcome this frustrating concern by following few hours painless procedure.
TECHNIQUES FOR HAIR TRANSPLANTATION
There are three principle procedures for hair transplantation which are as follows:
- Follicular Unit Transplant (FUT) also called ‘Strip’ method
- Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)
- Direct Hair Implantation (DHI)
MediExpert uses latest technology FUE and DHI in its transplants as FUT is an outdated technique which is likely to cause complications to the patient with longer recovery periods.
WHAT IS FOLLICULAR UNIT EXTRACTION (FUE) ?
FUE is one of the most updated and the state of the art procedure in today’s hair transplantation world. FUE is often referred to the gold standard of hair restoration. In FUE technique; no new hair is grown, only patient’s own hair is redistributed. This procedure uses small parts of skin with 1-4 hairs together, described as follicular units. A micro surgical extraction instrument so as also called the punch device between 0.6mm and 1.0mm in diameter, is used directly to remove the follicles one by one. It involves removing hair from an area from the rear side of the scalp and then divide them into smaller bits using a microscope and finally completing the process by transplanting them into the bald areas.
MEDIEXPERT’S FUE HAIR TRANSPLANT PROCESS EXPLAINED STEP BY STEP
1. HAIR PREPARATION AND EXTRACTING THE GRAFTS
The rear part of the scalp (donor area) is prepared by washing and shaving. The donor area do not have any tendency to fall as they are not affected by the related hormone for baldness unlike the rest of the head. A local anesthesia is applied to reduce any possible discomfort followed by the extraction of the follicular units from the donor area by using an electronic surgical instrument so as called ‘punch’. The advantage of using the punch is it creates virtually invisible little holes which then led to not visible to a naked eye after the procedure. After the grafts taken by the punch, they are then separated into one, two or three hairs categories. The number of grafts extracted in a procedure can vary from 1000 to 2000, which is equivalent of 2500 to 6000 hairs. The quantity is variable depending on the patient’s density of the donor zone. After the extraction, an antiseptic gel is applied to the donor area which can be easily removed the next day. Average hair extraction process take around 2-3 hours.
2. PREPARATION AND STORAGE OF THE FOLLICULAR UNITS
As soon as the extraction process complete, the follicular units are then placed in a nutritious solution which will ensure their vitality until they are cultivated. The follicular units must kept in the required optimal temperature until the start of the implantation. The appropriate conservation of the follicular units have a significant impact for the transplant to achieve better results.
3. DRAWING THE HAIR LINE
Drawing up the first frontal hair line is one of the most important phase in hair transplantation in order for the hair to look natural. Therefore, this is thoroughly discussed and consulted with the patient before the procedure begins.
4. OPENNING THE CHANNELS
At this stage of the procedure, anesthesia is used for the recipient area and incisions are made where the hair implants will later be placed. Channels are made with special needles under the thickness of 1mm. The depth of the channel will precisely be the same as the length of the follicular unit. The channels will define the growth direction of the hairs which has to be similar with existing natural hair pattern in the recipient area. This process takes around 45-90 minutes.
5. IMPLANTATION OF THE GRAFTS
This is MediExpert’s final phase of the hair transplantation procedure. Instruments to make precise placement of the grafts to the recipient area are used which is called ‘Implanters’. As each follicular unit have a variable number of hair (1-4 hairs), different implanter with all of them under 1mm in diameter is used depending on the quantity of hair accordingly in order to get a precise perfection.
Follicular units are then placed one by one into the designated areas starting with the front line. It is recommended to place the single hair grafts in the front line and the multiple grafts for the rest of the areas in order to achieve the best natural look. This final phase of placement of grafts commonly take between 2-4 hours depending on the number of grafts to be placed. After the implantation procedure completed, head is washed and cleaned up followed by a general check-up of the hair transplantation.
WHAT IS DIRECT HAIR IMPLANTATION? (DHI)
Direct Hair Implantation is a hair transplantation technique carried out by using a state of the art equipment called DHI Choi Implanter or Choi Pen. In this technique, the extracted follicular units are directly implanted into the recipient area without any delay. Donor area could be scalp, beard or chest.
MEDIEXPERT’S DHI TRANSPLANT PROCESS EXPLAINED STEP BY STEP
1. EXTRACTING THE GRAFTS
A local anesthesia is applied to reduce any possible discomfort followed by the extraction of the follicular units from the donor area. The grafts are then taken one by one with a special tool called ‘punch’ with a diameter of 1mm or less. They are then placed in a nutritious solution without any seperation. After the extraction, an antiseptic gel is applied to the donor area which can be easily removed the next day. Average hair extraction process take around 2-3 hours.
2. DRAWING THE HAIR LINE
Frontal hairline is drawn at this stage whether this part is going to be one of the recepient areas. It is one of the most important phase in hair transplantation in order for the hair to look natural. Therefore, this is thoroughly discussed and consulted with the patient before the procedure begins.
3. IMPLANTATION OF THE GRAFTS
The grafts then implanted directly into the recipient areas with an angle of approximately 45 degrees by state of the art equipment called ‘Choi Implanter’ with a diameter of 1mm or less without prior opening of any incisions or slits. The incision area and the graft implamantation is made simultaneously by insterting the grafts gently with the Choi Pen and implanted by pressing down the plunger.
ARGUMENTS SURROUNDING THE HAIR TRANSPLANTATION TECHNIQUES
FUT, FUE & DHI
Hair transplantation have been at the stage since the beginning of 90’s starting with FUT technique followed by FUE technique which was developed in early 2000’s and introduced in 2005. After the establishment of the FUE technique, number of hair transplant operations performed by FUT technique become lesser and today it is very rarely performed as the recovery time is longer and scars left after the procedure. As the technology is rapidly developing in today’s world, there are also new methods and techniques introduced in hair transplantation with the most popular technique being Direct Hair Implantation (DHI).
There are arguments about the hair transplantation techniques as some describe DHI as a completely new method, some do not recognize and consider as a marketing object, while for some it is described as just an another type of FUE since basic principles of FUE is used with different implanting procedures in to the extent to define ‘DHI’ as ‘FUE with Implanters’.
Furthermore, there are considerable portion of specialists in the field of hair transplantation consider DHI, Sapphire FUE, Micro Motor FUE, Robotic FUE and Percutaneous Hair Transplant techniques as a sub-technique of FUE Hair Transplant procedure.
While there are debates surrounding the clear description of the newly introduced hair transplantation methods, MediExpert’s goal is to be objective and provide you a clear understanding of the two methods in detail.
ADVANTAGES OF DHI OVER FUE TECHNIQUE
- Reduced out of body time of the follicles securing healthier implantation of the grafts as In Vivo ‘time out of body’ study of ‘Limmer’ indicates that out of body survival rates of the grafts are 95% for 2 hours, 90% for 4 hours and 86% for 6 hours respectively
- Increased survival rates of the hair follicles
- Shaving of the recipient area is might not required
- Reduced bleeding in the recipient area as no slits or incisions are made prior to the implantation. Incisions and graft implantation is made simultaneously
- Faster recovery period
DISADVANTAGES OF DHI OVER FUE TECHNIQUE
- Costs are higher
- More attention and accuracy is required throughout the whole procedure.
- Ease of implantation is reduced as the patient is in a sitting position
PAINLESS HAIR TRANSPLANTATION
In a typical hair transplantation procedure, local anesthesia is applied for the recipient areas in the head where the grafts will be extracted (site creation) and during donor harvesting in order to reduce any possible discomfort. Altough the level of the pain arsising from the local anesthesia is minimum which is similar to the ones in a regular dental procedure since very thin needles are used to reduce any possible pain, some sensitive patients prefer to ignore all kinds of needle applications for local anesthesia.
Thanks to the latest technology equipments used by MediExpert, patients now can enjoy a pain free application of local anesthesia. In this state of the art application, needles are replaced by an anesthetic solution which is injected into the skin creating a high pressure using mechanical energy. The device also called as ‘jet injector’ does not damage the surface of the skin throughout the whole process.
Therefore, painless (pain-free & needle-free) hair transplantation is made with the jet injectors. MediExpert uses two kinds of jet injectors for its pain-free hair transplantation procedures.
Needle-free injectors with a steel body: Higher level of anesthetics into the skin can be applied by an increased amount of pressure in one shot resulting in for the anesthetics to take effect within seconds. Needle-free injectors with a plastic body: Lower level of anesthetics into the skin applied which result in for the anesthetics to take effect after 90-120 seconds.
ANESTHESIA WITH NEEDLE-FREE INJECTORS COMBINED WITH SEDATION
The usage of sedation prior to the local anesthetics with jet injectors is considered to be the most advanced and effective method in terms of minimizing the pain. Sedation is given to the patient just a few minutes before the procedure in the process of this application. Sedation is a very safe application which can be applied to all the age groups. For the patients who have a fear of injection and high sensivity to the pain, MediExpert applies local anesthesia with needle-free injectors combined with sedation.
OTHER DRIVING FACTORS TO ENABLE HAIR TRANSPLATION PROCEDURE PAINLESS
- Usage of the high quality materials for the devices such as punches and Choi Implanters.
- Periodic replacement of the needles used in punches before it becomes blunt due to over usage
- Usage of micro punch with a low rpm during the extraction phase
- Usage of sapphire blades instead of steel blades during the site creation phase
SAPPHIRE MICRO FUE HAIR TRANSPLANTATION
As the rapid increase of technology developments occuring day by day, launching of a new and innovative techniques have also emerged in hair transplantation world accordingly. Since the establishment of FUE technique in 2004, it has become the most used and commonly accepted method worldwide. By then, on the never ending road to achieve the ‘perfect look’ has been accomplished by Sapphire Micro Fue method by meeting individuals expectations in terms of delivering most natural results.
In other words, FUE method which is still considered to be the golden standard for hair transplantation has improved its success to an upgraded level and taken its final form thanks to the application of special devices with sapphire blades. MediExpert performs Sapphire Micro FUE method in their hair transplant procedures successfully in order to deliver the most natural results. We describe Sapphire Micro FUE as an updated version of typical FUE performed by the utilization of the sapphire blades.
SAPPHIRE MICRO FUE VERSUS TYPICAL FUE
- Steel blades are used during the process of openining incisions in the recipient area, whereas sapphire blades are used in Sapphire Micro FUE.
- Sapphire Micro FUE is considered to be an innovation and a sub-technique performed with sapphire blades within the FUE procedure.
- Sapphire blades are designed to reduce scar formation by opening tiny micro channels within the recipient area.
- Recovery period is faster with sapphire blades compared with typical FUE with steel blades.
- Opening incisions is considered to be one of the most vital phase for the hair transplantation to be successful as the incisions have a major impact on the accurate angle, density and the direction of the hair growth in order to achieve most natural results. Utilization of sapphire blades with Sapphire Micro FUE is now the most effective method to open incisions. As a result, more incisions can be opened by using sapphire blades ranging between the size of 1,0-1,5mm allowing the grafts to be implanted closer to each other.
ADVANTAGES OF SAPPHIRE MICRO FUE USING SAPPHIRE BLADES OVER TYICAL FUE USING STEEL BLADES
- Using sapphire blades will have a significant impact in terms of incrasing the density resulting in achieving the most natural looking appearances as well as it will encourage the indivuals who are suffering advanced hair loss to go through a hair transplant procedure.
- Since the incisions is opened precisely at the same length of the grafts extracted, it is not quite possible for the grafts to become loose and the angle direction to be changed.
- Using sapphire blades thanks to its durability and sharpness will eventually reduce the vibration and assist on preventing the minor risk of complications such as scalp tissus damage and trauma.
- Tissue recovery is faster as well as bonded skin is much more smoother by using sapphire blades as a result of the incisions opened in the recipient areas is much smaller.
- Sapphire blades inject less tumescence which is a special liquid assisting on lifting the skin from the bone before opening incisions. Consequently, this allows shorther recovery periods for the patients.
HOW LONG IS THE HAIR TRANSPLANTATION PROCEDURE?
The total procedure will take between 8-10 hours depending on the density of the donor zone and the number of grafts to be implanted. It is recommended that you should take a complete day off and not make any arrangements on the day of the procedure.
STRAIGHT AFTER THE PROCEDURE
Immediately after the FUE procedure, you are free to go home or to your hotel within half an hour of the treatment ending. You will be able to see the new hairline with their new position. The results might not be as satisfactory as you have been expecting in the first place as there is some time needed in order to get back the good look you have been waiting for.
Although the FUE procedure not having any complications, it might cause minimal side effects such as swelling especially in the forehead which is only on temporary basis. It will lessen and heal within a day or two. MediExpert specialists will assist on how to good care of your transplanted hair and will give you recommendations on washing your hair and positioning while sleeping in order to achieve the best results.
IS HAIR TRANSPLANTATION PAINFUL?
Hair transplantation is not a painful practice at all, because of the use of local anesthesia for the operation which blocks the related nerves causing pain in the scalp. We regularly find patients falling asleep during the operation, while some prefer to watch a movie.
IS THERE ANY RISKS FOR THE PROCEDURE?
Since it is a minor cosmetic procedure which transferring hair from one area to the other, there is not any medical risks involved. It is a basic and very safe procedure.
HOW LONG IS THE RECOVERY PERIOD?
FUE hair transplantation technique is a painless procedure without any complications. Therefore, the recovery period should not take more than 5-7 days following MediExpert’s doctor recommendations. There will be no linear scars or incision at the back of the scalp, might have very little scars which will not be visible to the naked human eye, only through a magnifying glass.
CAN I GO TO WORK STRAIGHT AWAY AFTER THE OPERATION?
There is not any reason not to go to work straight away. However, it may be better to take a week off unless the doctor advise otherwise. If you plan to arrange holiday to a sunny destination straight after the operation, you are advised to use sunscreen with high factor and wear hat whilst under the sun.
WILL THE TRANSPLANTED HAIR LOOK NATURAL?
Since MediExpert specialists will place the hair precisely and strategically using a microscope, your hair will look like completely natural. It is almost impossible for someone who does not know that you underwent a procedure to differentiate your transplanted hair with the existing one.
SHORT TERM RESULTS
You will be realized that the implanted hairs start falling out between 2-6 weeks after the FUE procedure. You shouldn’t be worried as this is the necessary part of the procedure in order to open a way for the new hair’s to grow.
MEDIUM TERM RESULTS
The growth will begin after 3-4 months after the procedure. Average hair grows approximately 1 cm per month, therefore you will be having an idea of your new look after 5-7 months after the operation.
LONG TERM RESULTS
It usually takes about 12-14 months to gain back the complete look which you have been waiting for. As hair transplantation is a lifelong permanent solution to have your hair back, you will be completely free to have your hair short, long or with a style of your choice. Nobody including your barber will notice that you went through a FUE procedure which is basically a life time guarantee to have your complete hair back forever.