It is often thought that hair loss is genetic and impossible to treat. To begin, hair loss can actually be improved substantially if actively treated through early detection. There are several medically proven methods of treating hair loss including medication and hair transplant. The two most common drug treatments for men's hair loss is applying and taking medicine orally, both of which are mainly used to treat early and mid-term hair loss patients. However, some patients find that hair loss recurs once drug treatment is discontinued.
Many patients have turned to hair transplant surgery for their hair loss problems, but because of pain and scarring issues, patients prefer surgeries that are as non-invasive as possible. Is hair transplant surgery possible without any incision? Eunogo spoke to Dr. Lee Kyoung-gu from Banobagi Plastic Surgery to find out.
How do I know if I need hair transplant?
Hair transplant may be considered in cases where the hair loss is long-term or has not shown results after drug treatment. Hair transplant surgery is a hair loss treatment that can have the most definite effect within a short period of time. It is a method of transplanting hair from the back of the head, which is not affected by male hormones, into the hair loss area. The transplanted hair retains its original properties and remains intact throughout its life.
Incisional vs Non-Incisional Method of Hair Collection
There are two methods of hair collection, the incisional method, known as the Follicular Unit Transplant (FUT) and the non-incisional method, known as the Follicular Unit Excision (FUE).
The incisional method is to remove the area of the scalp with the necessary hair follicles and then transplant them into the hair loss area. This method is the most common method of extraction in hair transplant surgery, because it has a high rate of raw adhesion as the loss rate is low when separating hair follicles. It also has the advantage of a relatively faster transplant time and less financial burden.
The non-incisional method collects only the necessary hair follicles, without removing any part of the scalp. The hair transplant is performed without any incisions, so there is no need to worry about scarring. Although the scalp is less damaged and the recovery period is faster, a longer surgery duration will be needed compared to the incisional method because the follicles are collected one at a time.
Is there a quick yet effective non-incisional surgery?
As technology is advancing, there is a new robot in the field called the 'Artas' that can help with non-incisional hair transplant surgery. The hair transplant robot, which can analyse and select healthy follicles with promising growth rate, has been drawing lots of attention.
Artas Artificial Intelligence Robot is the only hair transplant robot approved for medical use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) and the Korea Food and Drug Administration (KFDA). With the Artas' computer system, only the healthy hair follicles are collected, which has a high growth rate and allows mass hair transplant within a short period of time.
Although the amount of hair lost during transplant surgery depends on the patient's hair condition and the area of hair loss, it is usually between 3,000 and 4,000 hairs. Since one Asian hair follicle contains one to three hairs, 1500 to 2000 hair follicles must be collected for non-incisional surgery. In conventional non-incisional hair transplant surgery, the hair follicles are collected and transplanted one by one manually. The surgery can be extremely long and tedious for the doctors, and it can become difficult to collect consistent hair follicles due to increased fatigue and decreased concentration of the doctor over time. With the Artas robot, hair transplant surgery is more effective and less time-consuming.
Who is this surgery for?
Artas hair transplant surgery is not only effective for first-time hair transplant patients, but also for patients who have previously received hair transplant surgery and require another one due to the scalp becoming fibrous (hardening). This procedure is especially suitable for those who are worried about postoperative scars or incisions.
What else should we be aware about hair transplant surgery?
When a hair follicle is collected during a hair transplant, it will not be regenerated at the collection site again, so it is important to see a skilled professional doctor as they have the aesthetic sense of transplanting hair by considering the patient's scalp condition and density of hair. The doctor's skills is especially important for hair transplant surgery, because a skilled extraction can also reduce the damage to the extracted hair follicles.
If you're wondering what a hair transplant consultation looks like, you can watch the video below. Raffi Ahmad, a famous Indonesian celebrity, received a hair transplant consultation at Banobagi Hair Transplant Clinic through Eunogo concierge service.
A standard hair transplant surgery of around 1000 hairs can cost USD $2500 for incisional surgery, and around USD $7500 onwards for non-incisional surgery in Korea. Of course, this price is an estimate and an exact quotation will depend your hair condition and other medical factors, which can be determined with a consultation with a hair transplant doctor.