Selecting The Right Tool for the Job

While looking into the hair transplant procedure most patients eventually come across the topic of F.U.E. hair transplant punches. Follicular unit extraction (F.U.E.) is one of the latest major technical advancements in surgical hair restoration surgery. The punch is the tip of the instrument that Dr. Sharma uses to remove each graft during the procedure. It may seem like an inconsequential detail, but physicians find that no single punch or method works equally well for all patients. Adaptability is key to ensuring consistently high graft quality from patient to patient.

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What is an F.U.E. Hair Punch?

The punch is the sharp, peaked end of the handheld tool used in the procedure. Surrounding the follicle with each insertion it scores the scalp, separating the graft from the surrounding area. The punch is then carefully lifted from the area leaving the graft ready for extraction. The graft is then placed into a HypoThermosol preserving solution until it is ready to be relocated to the desired area of the body.

Read more about Graft Storage

What is the most effective F.U.E. punch for my procedure?

Doctor Sharma will consider multiple different factors before deciding which punch to use for your procedure including your hair and skin type. Occasionally he will use multiple different punches on the day of surgery to accurately and safely excise the grafts. The types of punch can be discussed during your consultation at Sharma Skin & Hair Surgery prior to your procedure. Versatility is what allows us to maintain high quality results for each patient.

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Manual & Motorized Punches

Punches can be fixed or motorized. The motorized punches spin while entering and exiting the scalp allowing for a consistent and clean excision. The depth and angle is still completely influenced by the surgeon allowing for control for every graft. When harvesting a large amount of grafts consistency is key. For this reason, Dr. Sharma often selects a motorized punch to allow for uniformity.

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Harvesting the Grafts

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The key to a successful hair transplant is precision with the way the hair follicles are harvested and placed in the new area on the scalp. Human hairs are grouped together with multiple strands of hair in each follicular unit. Regardless of the number of hairs in the follicle, the entire graft is placed with all hairs remaining together. As the follicles are harvested, Dr. Sharma is careful to position the tool with precision so that it is aligned with the hair growth direction.

Regardless of the way the hair grafts are harvested, “stereoscopic dissecting” microscopes are used to ensure each follicular unit is prepared for transplant. Dr. Sharma is a highly trained surgeon, with years of experience to ensure these grafts remain viable for placement.

Is this painful?

Local anesthetic is administered to the recipient area, virtually eliminating any pain. The patient will only feel pressure and remains conscious throughout the procedure. Recipient sites are created to be the specific size of the follicular units, reducing unnecessary scaring. 

Hair Transplant FAQ’s

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TRANSECTION OF THE GRAFTS

The primary concern with F.U.E. is the rate of transection. This is the cutting of the shaft or bulb of the hair during the relocation process. While transfering such a large amount of grafts (often between 2,000-3,000), it is integral to keep the transection rate low. Complete transection of a graft leaves it unfit for transplantation.

WHAT IS A COMMON TRANSECTION RATE DURING F.U.E. PROCEDURES?

A transection rate of 3-5% is quite good. No reputable clinic can claim a 0% rate, each procedure comes with minor complications such as grafts with curved or unnatural angles under the scalp.

WHAT HAPPENS WITH INCOMPLETE GRAFTS?

As these grafts are unsuitable for transplant they are discarded from surgery. Despite patients paying for a set amount of grafts Dr. Sharma will often harvest an extra 5% to account for the chance of transection. This allows him to only transplant the best, living grafts. Most times we finish with additional grafts leftover – Dr. Sharma’s team will also transplant these grafts complimentary.

What is a Graft?

A graft is a collection of hair follicles. During a hair transplant procedure, Dr. Sharma redistributes the follicles which can contain single or multiple hairs. During your hair transplant, we use a motorized micro punch to loosen and relocate each graft the desired area.

Learn more about grafts here