Follicular unit extraction (FUE) which is also called Follicular Unit Separation & Extraction (FUSE) method or follicular transfer (FT), is a surgical procedure for obtaining follicular units. Mostly 1-4 hairs are easily taken out in this procedure for hair transplantation. In FUE technique, individual follicular units are obtained from the patient’s scalp where the hair are still present. This procedure is different from strip method since in strip method, a piece of skin(that contains hair follicles) is surgically removed from the patient’s scalp and then transplanted into various areas that have gone bald.With advancement in technology, FUE method has transformed itself into Advanced FUE. Advanced FUE has increased the possibility of obtaining hair follicles not only from the head but also from chest, legs, arms, abdomen, back, face, and beard.
In follicular unit extraction method first a small, circular incision is made within the skin,so as to separate the follicular unit from the surrounding tissue. Then the follicular hairis pulled out with the help of an instrument leaving a small open hole in the skin.
The follicular units are then stored for a while before they are transplanted within the bald areas of the patient’s scalp.
Before the grafts are transplanted, tiny holes are created within the bald areas of the scalp using a fine pointed needle. The hairfollicular units are then transplanted into the bald areas of the patient where they are bound to grow into healthy hair-producing follicles.
This process is repeated by the hair transplant specialist until he/she feels that enough follicular units have been transplanted for the planned hair restoration. This process takes a 3-5 hours since follicular units are extracted individually one by one. Sometimes one session may not be sufficient to achieve the required transplantation for hair growth and may stretch over a period of two consecutive days.
The tiny wounds which are approximately 0.75-mm in size don’t take much time to heal. Theyfully heal over atime period of seven to ten days, without any visible scarring.