When it comes to hair restoration, it can sometimes be difficult to get all the information needed to make a conscious decision on which procedure is the most suitable. But now it's time to compare two of the most well-known techniques available; Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT) and Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE).
FUT is the technique in which a piece of suitable skin from the correct position on the scalp is chosen for the transplant. This piece of skin will then be cut out and grafted on to the area of the body where hair needs replenishing. After the skin has been cut out, the wound will be closed by suturing the edges of the skin together. As for scarring, this will usually consist of a continuous and linear scar.
FUE is different from FUT in that this is a technique which has been revived from antiquity. The surgeon in question will situate the patient down and extract each separate follicle on a one-by-one basis. This is a long process which may be done over separate sessions or in one long session.
The cutting instrument used for the extraction will mean that each harvest will leave a small circular scar. This means that by the end of the process the patient will have multiple tiny discontinuous scars.
Pros and Cons
When it comes to scarring, FUE is certainly the best procedure if the patient does not want to have a long and visible scar because FUT will always leave one linear scar on the patient. But if the donor area is covered by clothing or thick hair then this will not be a talking point. With FUE, Advanced Therapy in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery by J. Thomas in 2010 outlines that: "The FUE donor sites heal as undetectable dots on the scalp."
Due to the fact that FUE is a much longer process than FUT, the costs will be much higher when it comes to FUE because, for obvious reasons, the patient is taking up more of the doctor's time. However, if the patient has decided to go abroad for treatment then costs will remain low when it comes to both procedures.
It's well-known that FUT usually has a higher yield when it comes to hair restoration. And this can be the main thing for many patients because they are willing to have a long, thin scar on the back of their heads in favor of a higher yield of hair and better results.
The recovery time is a major talking point when it comes to which is better. FUE generally has a much shorter recovery time before the patient can exercise and return to work. This is because no stitches are used and fewer follicular units are damaged.