Follicular unit transplantation

Follicular unit transplantation is also known as strip harvesting. Follicular unit refers to hair follicle and surrounding tissue. Each unit can contain 1-4 hairs and exit scalp from a single point. In FUT, a strip of skin is taken from the back of scalp by the surgeon and the two edges are sutured. Under the microscope, dissection of follicular units is done from the strip of scalp. These follicular units are then implanted in the balding area after making slits.

This method of hair transplantation results in a linear scar on the back of scalp from which grafts are harvested. This scar can be camouflaged if the patient has long hair. The sutures are removed after 7 days and the scar will heal in two weeks.

Implantation of grafts is technically challenging. The grafts have to be held gently with fine forceps and inserted automatically into holes made in bald area. It is critical to place the grafts closely without damaging tissue, which requires skill and patience. Hence, this is considered the most technically difficult aspect.