The process of “follicular unit extraction “has been part of the hair restoration field since first practiced by Dr. Ray Woods in Australia 20 years ago. Although the minimally invasive nature was immediately apparent , it was felt that the process was too slow and technically difficult to translate into the type of results that we were able to achieve with strip excision and microscopic dissection .
At the time “follicular unit transplantation” -where large strips of donor scalp could be perfectly dissected under direct vision using stereoscopic microscopes – was cutting edge . With yields around 98% it seemed almost perfect! In good hands the donor scar was almost invisible and hardly ever an issue .
At Hasson and Wong, we refined techniques with custom sized recipient sites ,ultra dense packing , mega sessions and the lateral slit technique . These techniques which collectively began to be referred to as “ultra refined transplanting ” , allowed us to achieve unprecedented results .
In 2004 at the 12th meeting of the ISHRS in Vancouver, H&W presented an unheard-of 25 patients (typically one patient is showcased) at the live patient viewing . All of these patients had surgeries performed by us using our techniques. In The next issue of the Hair Transplant Forum International the review from the editor emeritus of the journal wrote :
The indelible image I will take away I will take away from this meeting is that of the patients of Drs Victor Hasson and Jerry Wong. These were demonstrated at the Live Patient Viewing on Friday afternoon. To say these results were “mind-blowing”, would be an understatement. Please picture a young man with former type 5 baldness with over 5,000 FU’s harvested and planted in A SINGLE SESSION and growing with close to 100% perfection. Not only growing, but planted at up to 80 grafts per square centimetre and giving the appearance of completely normal hair direction and density with no ‘crinkle’ whatsoever and a donor scar of 1-2mm. The rest of us will be a long time catching up with the skills of Jerry and Victor and their wonderful staff of assistants. A word of caution for all of those who were as impressed as I was. Please do not return home, remove a 15×2 cm strip and start planting 5,000 FUs at 80 or even 40 per sq cm. This is something that you and your staff might like to aim toward but for goodness sake, work up to it gradually. It requires a marvel of coordination and expertise to be able to perform such a procedure even if, like me, you have been insertivng grafts for nearly 40 years
Since that meeting we have continued to consistently produce the most impressive results of any kind of hair restoration procedure available anywhere worldwide.
Time And Technology
Time and technology eventually changes everything . We have been closely following developments in the FUE field , purchasing newer equipment as it becomes available and testing it . We maintain a very close relationship with those ethical physicians performing cutting edge work in the FUE field .
In Europe the work of Dr Jose Lorenzo and Dr Koray Erdogan has come closest to the quality of work that we like to produce. With their assistance we have trained already experienced technicians in their manual extraction techniques. For approximately 2 years we have been slowly increasing the number of FUE procedures that we perform .
It has been a smooth, steady and impressive march to have arrived at where we are today. The only small detour was when we purchased the Artas Robot. We quickly discovered we could manually harvest grafts with a much higher rate of success in both quality and efficiency. We were also able to leave the donor area with much less damage than the robot. This significantly increased the ability for the patient to wear his or her hair short without any material signs of a procedure and also increased the percentage of viable grafts that could be harvested from the donor area in subsequent procedures if needed. In general our results have improved to the level that are indistinguishable from that of our strip surgery !!!
So now we are in a world where we have two different technologies producing equally incredible results .
This now gives our patients the option to choose the procedure which best suits them. It does however produce a new dilemma – what technique and for whom ?
Every individual who is considering a hair restoration procedure needs to be familiar with the advantages of each procedure as they make their decision which best suits their individual needs .
It is far more important however, to choose the best clinic, irrespective of techniques, to assure the best possible results .
Each clinic should approach their procedure as a work of art! If they are proud of their art it should be displayed in ultra high definition in their gallery . Each single hair as it exits the scalp should be individually visible. High definition videos are very helpful. Any galleries with poor lighting or poor resolution are a sure sign that this is not the clinic for you .
Remember -research .. research .. research
FUE VS. FUT- What Are The Differences?
The following Infographic provides a side by side comparison of the two hair transplant procedures.