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Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)

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About Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)

 The current pinnacle of hair restoration methods is a process known as follicular unit extraction (FUE) hair transplant surgery, which we perform in Palo Alto for patients from San Jose, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, and throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. However, the field did not advance to this point overnight. In fact, it has undergone a vast evolution over the past several decades.

Since the original days of “plugs,” hair restoration surgeons have used progressively smaller and smaller grafts to achieve an increasingly natural result. Ultimately the field advanced to using single follicle grafts (micro-follicles) in order to achieve completely natural, robust hair restoration. For many years, these grafts were created by cutting out a segment of hair-bearing scalp and dividing that tissue into individual grafts.

While the restoration results were fantastic, patients were left with an unsightly linear scar, curved like a smiley face, on the back of the head. In recent years, however, the field has taken a giant leap forward by eliminating the linear scar through the development of follicular unit extraction, which rapidly and accurately gathers healthy individual follicles from areas where hair grows in abundance. These follicles are then transplanted to places on the scalp that need it most, creating natural-looking results.

Woman standing outside smiling

What happens at a FUE hair transplant consultation?

Because every successful endeavor requires planning, the team at the center doesn’t improvise with your hair. Before any follicular unit extraction procedure, a doctor will conduct a thorough consultation to make sure that FUE really is the best method for achieving your sought-after results. We will start by reviewing your hair restoration goals and setting realistic expectations based on your unique situation. We will take photos to establish visual references. In some cases, we will draw out a new hairline to show you the transplanted hair’s projected aesthetic impact to get a better idea of what the ultimate results could be.

There is no “one size fits all” approach to follicular unit extraction, as your scalp is totally unique, and so is the manifestation of your hair loss. Aesthetic considerations include the density of hair that will be left in the donor site; the density to be created in the recipient site; the former, existing, and intended hairline; how long the new hair will be worn; and more. Successful follicular unit extraction demands a doctor with an artistic eye to go along with medical and technical know–how.

You may also need to have the donor site trimmed close to the scalp before any FUE hair transplant begins, which should be taken into account when it comes to deciding on if and when follicular unit extraction will be scheduled.

Patient getting treatment for Follicular Unit Extraction at L&P Aesthetics

Each follicle holds one to four hairs, so the follicular unit extraction process is a meticulous one, especially when you consider that it may ultimately involve the extraction of thousands of hairs in all.

The area where a follicle was punched out of the scalp during follicular unit extraction will bear a small, circular mark that will shrink to a tiny dot as it heals on its own, and will further vanish as the donor site’s hair grows out to its pre-trimmed length.

Why L&P and Is NeoGraft better than manual FUE?

Today’s evolved technology means hair restoration is now the best it’s ever been, including the harvesting step. When performing follicular unit extraction, the doctor will use a NeoGraft® device to collect individual or very small groups of hairs one follicle unit at a time. This is truly what sets FUE apart from previous hair transplantation methods, as the state-of-the-art automated system allows for large sections to be harvested while being the least invasive transplantation option available. Unlike other methods that relied on cutting strips from the scalp, NeoGraft® offers minimal downtime, no numbness at the donor site, no staples, no stitches, and best of all: No strip scar.

Follicular unit extraction is sometimes performed manually, though the automated method is ideal whenever and wherever possible.

When it comes time to perform the actual harvest, our team will use a magnifier to take an extremely close look at the scalp and remove the healthy hairs with a micromotor that punches a tiny hole as it removes each unit. Follicular unit extraction with NeoGraft® is a powerful harvesting method, allowing the doctor to collect hair efficiently without removing a chunk of scalp by controlling:

  • The micropunch diameter
  • The micrometer speed
  • The hair follicle orientation and depth
  • Distance between extracted follicles

Hair Transplant Before and After Gallery

View real results from real patients below.

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Hair Restoration before and after treatment

More Hair For Younger Male

This patient from San Francisco began losing hair in his 20’s and wanted to do something about it before the hair follicles became totally inactive. Fortunately, he found Drs. Lieberman and Parikh who were able to give him a successful hair transplant focusing mostly on the crown of the head. The patient loves his results and says that his confidence has been restored.

Hair Restoration before and after treatment

Hair Restoration for Silicon Valley Executive

This Silicon Valley executive came to Drs. Lieberman & Parikh because he was feeling very old around his younger co-workers and wanted to make a change. Through hair restoration, the doctors were able to bring more fullness to his hair and restore his confidence.

Hair Restoration before and after treatment

Dramatic Results for Young Man Wanting Hair Restoration

This patient of ours was having front hair loss and wanted to fill in the gaps, he felt much more confident after taking care of these small details in his appearance that made a big difference.

Hair Restoration before and after treatment

Two Days After Hair Restoration

Many patients want to know what their hair will look like immediately after a NeoGraft hair transplant. These photo show the shaved hair style this patient chose to get before the transplant and what he looked like two days afterwards. At three days, this patient felt comfortable returning to work.

Hair Restoration before and after treatment

38-Year-Old Male Gets 2200 Grafts

This 38-Year-old male from Silicon Valley found Drs. Lieberman and Parikh after he did intense research for the best hair restoration surgeons in Northern California. His hairline was receeding faster than he wanted and the overall coverage was thinning out. He got a hair transplant of 2200 grafts and is ecstatic about the results.

Recovery and Beyond

One of the best ways to prepare for a hair restoration procedure is to be informed. Learn more on our Frequently Asked Questions page, and be sure to familiarize yourself with the available hair restoration procedures and treatments throughout our website.

Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) FAQs

Now that follicular unit extraction has provided the hairs, anywhere from 2,500 to 3,000 grafts, we’re able to use these follicles to re-create the density, directionality, and robustness of a natural head of hair. The end result is imperceptible from a natural head of hair, because the units are deliberately and carefully placed, one by one, into the recipient site to mimic natural hair growth. And remember: With follicular unit extraction, your scalp will be unmarred by an unsightly line at the back of the head.

Much like the marks at the donor site, the incisions at the recipient site will heal into unobtrusive spots, as well as be covered by the transplanted hair.

In the weeks after a follicular unit extraction treatment, some hairs will fall out, and the newly transplanted follicles will be gathering strength to generate new hair, which is typically noticeable at around four months. It should take about half a year for the transplanted hair to grow in and reveal a significant change.

Elevating Aesthetics to New Heights

Work That Speaks for Itself

Trust your beauty to an award-winning team of board-certified facial plastic surgeons, renowned for comprehensive expertise, high-quality care, and an unparalleled commitment to patients. Learn why men and women throughout San Francisco, Palo Alto, and San Jose select L&P Aesthetics for superior results.

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