FUE Hair Transplant: Costs, Procedure, & Benefits Explained
FUE Hair TransplantNo Comments
Last Updated:
July 22, 2024
Written By:
James Wilson

You’ve probably come across the term FUE Hair Transplant quite often during your research on hair transplants.

If you’ve landed on our blog, it’s clear you’re looking to delve deeper into this method.

Before we dive in, let me introduce myself quickly.

I am James, and I co-founded Tecnifue International Hair Clinic in Istanbul.

I’ve personally guided thousands in their hair restoration procedures in Turkey since 2012.

In this blog, I’ll comprehensively discuss the FUE method, covering everything from the basics to the benefits, and share real-life experiences to enhance your understanding.

Good research is the key to a successful outcome, and I’m here to ensure you have all the information you need.

So, are you ready to get started?

Let’s explore what exactly a FUE Hair Transplant is and why it might be the right choice for you.

What is the FUE Hair Transplant?

FUE hair transplants involve individually extracting hair grafts from the back and sides of the head. This minimally invasive method, unlike FUT, reduces scarring. Both manual and robotic FUE techniques are used, with manual being more common

You’ve heard about FUE hair transplants but might wonder what they involve.

Let’s explain in a simple way.        

You can view it as a surgical hair restoration procedure under cosmetic surgery/plastic surgery.

Some refer to it as a hair loss treatment, but I believe it must be marked as a surgical procedure.

 FUE stands for Follicular Unit Extraction(sometimes called Follicular Unit Excision).

It’s a popular hair restoration technique used by hair transplant clinics to help people restore their hair density or balding areas(recipient area).

“Follicular Unit” refers to groups of one to four hairs, commonly known as a hair graft(donor grafts – hair plugs).

The “Extraction”(harvesting hair) part means that hair restoration surgeons remove these hair grafts individually, one at a time(from the back and sides of the head).

There are two forms of extraction: manual FUE and Robotic FUE.

Manual FUE is the standard worldwide, as robotic FUE is limited in availability.

Unlike another method called FUT Hair Transplant (Follicular Unit Transplantation – linear scar), where a strip of hair is removed, FUE doesn’t involve cutting out a large section of the donor hair(strip harvesting).

In another section, I discuss the differences between FUE transplant and traditional FUT strip surgery.

I’ve actually prepared a dedicated blog where I compare FUE vs. FUT.

In this dedicated blog, I discuss the FUT Strip Method in more detail versus the FUE.

I cover topics such as survival rates, which method is better suited for short hair, and the healing process.

In essence, an Follicular Unit Extraction hair transplant involves taking each hair graft separately.

This technique is crucial for understanding how the procedure works. It’s more gentle and minimizes scarring.

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s dive deeper into how this hair restoration surgery works in practice.

How does a FUE Hair Transplant Work?

If you want to know how a hair transplant works in general terms, you can visit our ”Hair Transplant: Expert Guide to Success (5 Unique Insights)” Blog, where we discuss more general topics in great detail.

Topics include whether you’re a good candidate and other hair transplant techniques.

I will focus on the FUE Hair Transplant Method for now to keep matters relevant.

So, to best understand how the FUE procedure works, there are steps or stages.

With this method, we have three stages.

Stage 1 of the FUE Hair Transplant: Extraction Stage

The FUE extraction stage involves harvesting hair grafts from a donor area resistant to hair loss. Using a precision punch tool, each graft is carefully extracted to ensure quality. This meticulous process can take 1.5 to 3 hours, prioritizing healthy grafts for transplantation.

The first step of the FUE technique is the Extraction Stage(graft harvesting).

This step begins with choosing the right spot on your head to take the hair.

We call this the Donor Area(donor site), and it’s picked out during your initial consultation.

The hairs in these areas of the scalp are unique because they’re resistant to the hormone DHT(safe donor area), which means they don’t fall out like other hairs can.

In simpler terms, these hairs are here to stay.

Before anything else happens, the donor zone is numbed with local anesthesia to ensure your comfort.

Then, the extraction begins.

Extraction Phase of a FUE Hair Transplant Surgery @Tecnifue International

We use a precision tool called a punch, essentially a tiny, rapidly spinning, hollow needle.

Let’s visualize it: imagine this sharp, hollow needle gently touching a hair graft(micropunches); it’s precise enough to isolate and cut around each graft without harming it.

The fue grafts(individual hair follicles) are then delicately loosened by a circular incision and ready to be removed using precision flat-headed tweezers.

This process is extremely delicate and requires meticulous attention to detail.

The diameter of the punch, the depth it reaches, and its speed (rotation per minute) are finely tuned to ensure the grafts are extracted healthily.

I know this sounds a bit technical, but think of it like this: each hair follicle is fragile and needs to be handled with care to stay intact and healthy.

This precision work lays the foundation for a successful hair transplant, ensuring these healthy grafts grow into strong, healthy hair.

The time it takes to extract all the grafts varies.

 It depends mainly on how many grafts you need and the specifics of your donor area.

For instance, extracting from curly or fine hair requires more care and time.

Additionally, skin elasticity varies from person to person, affecting the duration and technique needed for successful extraction.

We prioritize quality over speed.

It’s not about how quickly we can do the job but how well we can do it without damaging the grafts or overharvesting.

The extraction might take an hour and a half to three hours, but the key is to focus on the quality of each graft extracted.

We understand this can be overwhelming, so we offer additional support through visuals, videos, and direct communication.

If you have any questions or need further clarification, our medical consultants are available for a chat over WhatsApp, a phone call, or even a video call.

They’re trained to break down complex procedures into simple explanations.

After all the grafts are extracted, they are kept in a particular solution to maintain their vitality until they are ready to be implanted in the next stage of your FUE hair transplant, the Channel Opening Stage.

Let’s explore that next.

Stage 2 of the FUE Hair Transplant: Channel Opening Stage

After extracting hair grafts, the Channel Opening Stage begins, preparing precise incisions for the new hair. This stage impacts hair density, natural appearance, and graft survival. Typically lasting 1.5 to 2 hours, it’s crucial for successful transplantation.

After the hair grafts have been carefully extracted, we move on to the second crucial stage of an FUE hair transplant: the Channel Opening Stage.

Think of this phase as preparing tiny beds where the new hair will be planted in your scalp(recipient site).

These are not just holes; they are meticulously created incisions that determine how your hair looks and how well it grows.

This stage is as surgical as the extraction phase, with precision playing a pivotal role.

You will see that the hair transplant surgeon generally performs this stage.

Two main tools are typically used in this process: the slit and the sapphire.

Both have unique benefits and uses, which we’ll explore later on this page.

So, how exactly does channel opening affect your transplant results?

Channel opening has a major impact on hair density

First and foremost, it influences the density of your new hair.

The closer these tiny channels are to each other, the denser your hair will appear.

It’s a delicate balance because too close can cause damage, while too far apart might not give you the desired look.

Channel opening plays a key role in natural hair design

Secondly, the direction and angle at which these channels are made will dictate how natural your hair looks.

The direction is essential if you still have some of your natural hair.

The goal is for the transplanted hair to blend seamlessly with your existing hair, creating a uniform, natural appearance that doesn’t look out of place.

Another crucial aspect influenced by channel opening is the design of your hairline.

Typically, the first few rows of the transplant should consist of single hair grafts to achieve a natural edge.

The size of the tools used here matters—a smaller tip creates a finer, more natural-looking channel.

Correct channel opening plays a key role in graft survival

Beyond aesthetics, channel opening is vital for graft survival.

Each graft’s size and thickness are often influenced by ethnicity and individual characteristics.

The channels must be the right size and depth to ensure each graft receives enough nutrients to thrive.

Too shallow, and the grafts risk not taking root properly; too deep, and they might need more exposure to grow strong.

The right tool makes a difference here.

For instance, the Sapphire tool has predefined sizes that help reduce human error, ensuring each channel is ideally suited to the graft it will host.

How long does channel opening take during FUE?

Typically, the channel opening phase lasts one and a half to two hours, depending on the number of grafts.

We understand this is complex and can be overwhelming.

Feel free to reach out if you need more detailed explanations.

I’ve spent years learning the intricacies of these procedures, and it’s completely normal if it doesn’t all make sense right away.

We aim to ensure you understand what’s involved and what you can expect.

We’re here to help through additional information on our website or a personal consultation.

Just reach out if you need clarification on any of the technical details.

Understanding these subtleties gives you an advantage when discussing options with surgeons or consultants.

Now that we have a better grasp of the Channel Opening Phase let’s move on to the third and final phase of your FUE hair transplant: the Implantation Phase.

Stage 3 of the FUE Hair Transplant: Grafts Implantation Stage

The Grafts Implantation Stage completes the FUE hair transplant process, with skilled technicians carefully placing each graft. Proper technique, experience, and patient comfort are crucial for success. Every step, from extraction to implantation, must be meticulously executed to ensure optimal results.

We’ve reached the final leg of our FUE hair transplant journey—the Grafts Implantation Stage.

After the grafts are extracted and the channels are opened, it’s time to place or implant them carefully.

This stage is typically handled by two medical staff members, one on each side of your head.

The implanter on the left must be left-handed, and the one on the right must be right-handed, ensuring precision and ease during the process.

Picture this: the medical team works in a minimal space, holding only a 1.2 mm thin follicle and implanting it into a 1.3 to 1.5 mm wide channel.

Now, imagine doing this 2,500(individual follicular units) times.

It’s not just a test of skill but of patience and focus.

This intricate work must be completed within a specific time frame because the longer the grafts are outside the body, the more likely they will lose their vitality.

Patient comfort is another crucial aspect.

Imagine lying still for several hours—it’s tough!

That’s why the efficiency and speed of the implanting technicians are essential.

They need to work swiftly but carefully to minimize discomfort and ensure the health of the grafts.

Let’s discuss the most critical aspect of this phase: the risk of damaging the grafts during implantation.

Three ways FUE grafts can get damaged

There are several ways this can happen.

It starts with extraction—improper technique can harm the grafts.

Then there’s preservation; if the grafts aren’t stored under the right conditions while they wait for implantation, they can deteriorate.

Finally, grafts can be damaged during the channel opening and implantation if the channels aren’t the correct depth or diameter or if the technician mishandles them.

Team experience is paramount here.

Our clinic ensures that all technicians have at least five years of experience.

They undergo a thorough vetting process and once hired, they receive an additional 6 to 12 months of internal training to meet our high standards.

This meticulous attention to detail is crucial because every step, from extraction to implantation, is interconnected and vital for the success of the transplant.

The overall outcome depends not just on these phases but also on tailoring the procedure to our patient’s individual needs and situations.

We’ve advocated personalized treatment for over a decade because we believe it’s the only way to achieve successful hair restoration.

Now that we’ve covered the whole process of an FUE hair transplant and its critical stages let’s shift gears and talk about something equally important—the costs involved.

FUE Hair Transplant Costs

Hair transplants can be quite a financial commitment, and the cost varies significantly depending on where you have the procedure done.

For instance, getting a hair transplant in Turkey is generally less expensive than in places like the United States or the United Kingdom.

We’ve got a detailed page all about hair transplants in Turkey, including costs, so if you’re interested, check out our ”Hair Transplant in Turkey: Expert Guide to Succes(15 Tips)” Blog for all the details.

Now, let’s zoom out and consider the costs of FUE hair transplantation from a more global perspective.

In many Western countries, including the United States, Canada, and Europe, clinics often charge per graft.

The cost per graft pricing means the more grafts you need, the higher the cost.

For example, if a clinic charges $3 per graft and you need 3,000 grafts, your total would be $9,000.

In contrast, some countries like Turkey offer a fixed price for up to a certain number of grafts, making budgeting easier.

To give you an idea of prices elsewhere, a hair transplant in the U.K. might cost between $7,000 and $10,000, depending on how many grafts you need.

Meanwhile, in the U.S., you might look at anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000 or more, making it one of the priciest places for this procedure.

Our clinic in Turkey aims to make FUE hair transplants more financially accessible for many people from the U.S. and Europe.

Our packages can give you an idea of what it might cost to have a procedure done here.

With a clearer understanding of the costs involved in FUE hair transplants, let’s explore the advantages of this method.

What are the Advantages of a FUE Hair Transplant?

The FUE method has unique advantages and benefits compared to other hair transplant methods and has risen in popularity in recent years.

One of the biggest perks is that there’s no need for stitches, which means there’s no large scar on the back of your head.

Not only does this look better, but it also means you’ll likely have a quicker recovery time since there’s no stitching involved.

In terms of recovery, the FUE method allows many patients to return to work just a few days after the procedure, thanks to its minimal invasiveness.

Additionally, the FUE method enables the extraction of more grafts in a single session.

This higher number of grafts is particularly beneficial for individuals with more advanced hair loss, as larger areas can be treated at once.

Lastly, when performed by experienced medical teams using the right tools, FUE hair transplants can achieve natural-looking results.

The transplanted hair blends seamlessly with the existing hair, enhancing look and confidence.

In summary, the advantages of the FUE hair transplant method include:

  • No large horizontal donor scar at the back of the head
  • Short recovery period
  • Treatment of large areas of hair loss is possible
  • High number of graft extractions
  • Natural-looking results
  • Able to wear shorter hairstyles

Impressive, right?

Unsurprisingly, this method is considered a global leader in hair restoration.

Now that we’ve covered the technique, how it works, and its benefits, let’s move on to the FUE hair transplant before and after results.

Ready to dive in?

FUE Hair Transplant Before and After Results

FUE Hair Transplant Before and After Result Nicolas van de Branden @Tecnifue International

Undergoing an FUE hair transplant procedure is a journey, not just a quick fix; the full results take time to reveal themselves.

This process requires patience and meticulous care, but the result is worth the wait and can truly transform your life.

I understand this deeply, not only from the numerous positive comments I’ve received from our patients but also from my own personal experience.

Having undergone a hair transplant, there’s an absolute joy in seeing your new hair each time you look in the mirror.

So, what can you expect to see?

The hair transplant results we achieve showcase the dramatic transformations possible with FUE hair restoration.

These results can significantly alter your appearance, underscoring just how vital hair is to our overall look.

The changes aren’t just about more hair—they’re about regaining confidence, restoring your youthful appearance, and feeling great about yourself every day.

FUE Hair Transplant Before and After Result Joep @Tecnifue International

Final Note: Before Summing Up

Hair loss or sudden thinning hair can profoundly affect your life, making it essential to fully understand all your treatment options before jumping into a solution.

Androgenetic alopecia, or male pattern baldness, is a well-known culprit behind hair loss in men, but it’s far from the only cause.

A thorough hair restoration consultation should consider factors like your medical history, type of hair loss, and hair growth pattern.

Another crucial aspect easily overlooked is the possibility of further hair loss in an area of the scalp where one still has hair.

This is particularly vital for younger patients who face a higher risk of ongoing hair loss.

Most people simply dream of having a fuller, natural-looking head of hair again, but understanding the likelihood of future hair loss is key for long-term success and satisfaction.

It’s the duty of professionals in the field of hair restoration to conduct a thorough assessment to determine if you are the ideal candidate for a hair transplant.

Personalized Hair Loss Treatment Is Key to Long-Term Satisfaction.

Understanding hair loss causes and treatment options is crucial for long-term satisfaction. Androgenetic alopecia is common, but other factors matter too. A thorough consultation ensures a personalized treatment plan addressing your specific needs and future hair loss risks.

This assessment should precede any discussion about the best method for your case.

While it’s important to ask about potential side effects, which pain medications to take when to resume strenuous activities and post-procedure restrictions, these questions only scratch the surface of what you should know.

Every professional in this field should provide patients with a clear understanding of what’s causing their hair loss and develop a personalized treatment plan that addresses their unique situation.

A personalized treatment plan is not just about restoring your fuller head of hair and natural looking hair, but also about ensuring your long-term satisfaction with the results.

This tailored approach takes into account your unique situation, addressing the specific causes of your hair loss and your individual expectations.

It’s this level of personalization that can truly make a difference in your hair restoration journey.

Summing Up

What a journey.

Trust me, putting this information together for you has been quite an adventure for me, too.

I’ve done my best to simplify everything to help empower you to make an informed decision about your hair transplant.

We’ve covered everything our patients typically ask before and after their FUE Hair Transplant surgery.

I’m confident that many of your questions have been answered, and you’ve probably learned a few things about aspects you hadn’t considered before.

If it all seems overwhelming, don’t worry.

Take your time to digest the information; there’s no rush.

It took me over a decade to become an expert in this field, so don’t feel pressured to grasp everything in just a few days.

Reviewing our provided content will equip you with essential insights for better decision-making.

You’ll often hear me say this: A Hair Transplant Surgery is not just any purchase, it’s a permanent choice.

You’ll see the results daily, so it’s essential not to take the decision lightly.

If you feel ready to explore whether a FUE Hair Transplant is right for you or to discuss your options, don’t hesitate to reach out.

My team and I are here to guide you every step of the way of your FUE Hair Transplant.

Free FUE Hair Transplant Consultation

If you’re considering a FUE hair transplant, we’re here to help.

We’ve been dedicated to assisting our patients with this advanced method since 2012.

Deciding on a hair transplant is a significant and personal journey, often filled with numerous questions.

Our medical consultants are highly experienced and skilled in addressing all your concerns, simplifying even the most complex aspects of the procedure.

Contact us today and discover how we can support you in your FUE hair transplant journey.

FAQ

How long does a FUE hair transplant last?

An FUE hair transplant takes 4 to 8 hours, depending on the number of grafts and your individual conditions.

Your personal factors may also influence the duration.

Is FUE hair transplant permanent?

A FUE hair transplant is permanent, but it’s key to note that while transplanted hair stays, your existing hair might still fall out.

Can FUE hair transplant fail?

A FUE hair transplant can fail like other methods.

Success depends on the medical team’s experience and the patient’s adherence to aftercare instructions.

Is a FUE transplant worth it?

A FUE hair transplant is worth considering for permanent hair loss.

We recommend consulting with an expert about your specific case before making any decisions.

What are the disadvantages of FUE technique?

The FUE method is costlier than traditional methods and usually requires shaving your head, which can be a challenge for many considering a hair transplant.

Is an FUE hair transplant painful?

A FUE hair transplant can be a bit painful during the first few minutes of local anesthesia, but after that, the procedure is generally pain-free.

How expensive is FUE?

Costs vary by location and number of grafts.

Prices in the US and Europe are higher compared to countries like Turkey.

How long after FUE can I get a haircut?

You can get a haircut 6 weeks after the procedure.

Use only scissors on the transplanted area for up to 6 months.

Clippers can be used on the donor area after 6-8 weeks

Can I shave head after FUE?

Avoid shaving the transplanted area for 6 months after the procedure.

While grafts are secure, using a machine risks dislodging them.

Letting hair grow uninterrupted promotes healthy growth.

Does FUE look natural?

A FUE hair transplant looks very natural if done by an experienced medical team.

Designing a hairline that naturally fits your face is also crucial for achieving the best results.

Does FUE last forever?

A FUE hair transplant lasts forever. However, it’s essential to care for the transplanted hair properly to maintain its vitality and ensure lasting results

Does hair always fall out after FUE?

About 85% of people experience initial hair shedding after a FUE hair transplant.

It’s best to expect that your hair will likely shed initially before growing back stronger.

When can I sweat after FUE?

Avoid excessive sweating for the first ten days post-op.

While normal sweating is inevitable, the main concern is the excessive sweating from intense exercise.

Does donor hair grow back after FUE?

Donor hair extracted during a FUE transplant doesn’t grow back, but remaining hairs at the donor site will.

Proper donor harvesting is crucial to avoid aesthetic issues post-procedure.

What percentage of FUE grafts survive?

The survival rate can be as high as 99%.

The expertise of the medical team and proper follow-up of post-op instructions by the patient are crucial to achieving this rate.

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James Wilson

James co-founded Tecnifue International and has guided thousands of patients personally since 2012 in their hair transplant journey. He is a trusted voice in Turkey's hair restoration scene and your go-to source for the best insights.

How we reviewed this article:

*https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2956961/ - FUE Hair Transplant

*Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) Hair Transplant: Curves Ahead
Published online 2019 May 28. by Ravi Sharmacorresponding author and Anushri Ranjan.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6795649/

Current Version

Written By

James Wilson

July 5, 2024 at 04:36 pm

Edited By

James Wilson

July 3, 2024 at 12:40 pm

Edited By

James Wilson

July 2, 2024 at 03:13 pm

Edited By

James Wilson

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