The bald and the hair transplant

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Your reflection staring back at you with a receding hairline is not a sight anyone wishes to see. There is certainly no shame in hair loss, yet many still struggle with this ordeal. Because after all, hair loss remains a loss. Although some men take their bald fate with a good heart; there are others who watch helplessly as their confidence plummets to the ground.

Whether you fit the former group or the latter group, whether you’re here for educational purposes or to find a solution for your conundrum, read along to learn about hair transplants, your potential silver lining.

How hair loss happens

Hair loss occurs for various reasons, however ever, very rarely is it permanent. A few conditions can result in irreversible miniaturization of follicular units, with the most prevalent being androgenic alopecia. Androgenic alopecia is as the name suggests, hair loss due to androgens.

Androgens, the same hormones that promote hair growth on the body, stimulates the dormancy of scalp follicular units.

How and why testosterone, or more accurately, DHT is capable of initiating polar opposite effects on follicular units based on their location in the body, is still a mystery. Aspects of how androgenic alopecia occurs in a distinct pattern and how the pattern varies from one individual and the other have been understood.

For one, hair loss due to androgenic Alopecia is a phenomenon that could solely be attributed to inherited varying degrees of androgen sensitivities between follicular units. Follicular units in the vicinities of the crown and hairline have higher numbers of DHT receptors in comparison to androgen resistant follicular units at the back of the scalp. Consequently, hair loss occurs in a distinct pattern.

Reversing androgenic alopecia with hair transplants

Among the permanent and effective treatments for both advanced and non-advanced cases of androgenic alopecia. Hair transplantation is a surgical procedure that successfully reverses hair loss through two approaches: follicular unit transplantation (FUT) and follicular unit extraction (FUE).

How hair transplants work

Hair transplants function entirely on the androgen-resistant characteristics of androgenic alopecia. The anti-miniaturization properties are a matter of genetic predisposition, and therefore cannot be altered later on in life. Consequently, follicular units with the desired characteristics of stability are transplanted to areas of hair loss where they permanently generate hair growth.

FUE and FUT

Follicular unit transplantation and follicular unit extraction, are technically the two primary categories of hair transplantation. Every other technique falls under the subcategory of either.

Follicular unit transplantation

Follicular unit transplantation, in a nutshell, is a souvenir from the past, the first method of hair transplantation. The technique was later modified and enhanced to eliminate its many side effects and rather invasive protocol. The technique of FUT requires the incision of scalp skin, from donor regions, in order to obtain dormancy-resistant follicular units, which are later implanted individually in areas of hair loss.

The technique of graft extraction poses various risks that are unnecessary which includes augmented infection risks as a result of the size of the wound, risk of nerve damage that could be permanent, and a visible scar that screams “hey I just got a hair transplant” to everyone.

Follicular unit extraction

It is the natural flow of events in the universe to evolve towards convenience and efficiency. Hair transplants are no exception. Shortly after, FUE emerged to serve immaculate results where FUT fell short.

In comparison to its conventional counterpart, FUE hair transplants tend to extract grafts individually using a micro-punch to isolate them and forceps to pull them out. The minimally invasive technique of graft harvesting does not pose any risk of damaging neighbor tissue and nerves. In addition, the scars are micro in size and cannot be seen with the naked eye.

Are hair transplants for everyone?

Bias exists in life, whether by intent or naturally, there is no one size fits all. Hair transplants rely entirely on your reservoir of androgen-resistant follicular units. Because the transplanted hairs cannot grow back, you need to have sufficient follicular unit volunteers that could cover your balding scalp without disturbing the aesthetics of your donor’s hair.

If you would like to have a medical specialist assess your scalp and evaluate your candidacy, book a free online consultation with Vera Clinic.

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