DHI VS FUE VS FUT
FUT or Follicular Unit Transplant is one of the more traditional hair restoration techniques still in use in certain medical centres around the world. The Follicular Unit Transplant procedure begins with the doctor outlining a thin strip of the scalp from the back of the patient’s head. This area is usually unaffected by alopecia and hair follicles have a higher chance of growing successfully after transplant. The hair follicles are then removed from the strip of scalp with the help of a microscope – they will be later divided into single units containing 1-3 hair follicles. The patient’s scalp is then sewn back together and the implant phase of the procedure can begin. FUT hair transplants are generally more affordable than other hair restoration techniques simply due to the fact that the extraction phase is much quicker but patients who prefer short hair usually opt for a different technique since FUT leaves a long scar along the patient’s back of the head. Patients prone to keloid scarring should opt for a different technique since the scar will be quite noticeable.
FUE or Follicular Unit Extraction is another established hair restoration technique where instead of a strip of scalp being removed to harvest hair follicles, a punch is used. The punch creates a circular mico-incision around a group of hair follicles or single hair follicle, removing it from the scalp. The Follicular Unit Extraction technique leaves small open holes in the scalp which will heal within a few weeks, leaving tiny white scars once fully healed. Once enough hair follicles are extracted through this method, the surgeon is ready to start implanting them into the desired area. The biggest advantage of FUE over FUT is the minimal scarring after the procedure and the fact that patients can resume their daily activities faster. Unfortunately, FUE is somewhat more expensive than FUT, since this technique is more time consuming. In some cases the survival rate of transplanted hair follicles can be lower with the FUE technique, if the hair follicle roots are affected during extraction. By opting for an experienced hair restoration surgeon, patients can minimise any risks and enjoy a higher survival rate for implanted follicles.
Direct Hair Implantation is sometimes called a “Micro-FUE” hair transplant since it uses the same basic technique but with some differences. DHI does not cut into the scalp as with FUE, using only very small micro punches with a diameter of 1 mm or less. These small punches are minimally invasive, ensuring no scars are left in the donor area. One of the differences between FUE and DHI is the fact that with DHI the hair follicles are carefully extracted one by one before being transferred to the receiving area. This procedure is always done by a highly trained specialist in order to ensure the best results. The hair follicles are then implanted in the receiving area in a process similar to the FUE technique – a technician will create reception holes in the receiving area before starting to implant the donated hair follicles.
This content is written and reviewed by our medical content team in January, 2019.