In recent years, more and more men suffering from hair loss have turned to FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) hair transplant to reliably reverse the signs of male pattern baldness. In this procedure, hair follicles are individually extracted from the most common areas of the scalp and implanted in areas where hair is lacking. Perhaps the most valuable benefit of FUE is that it no longer has a linear scar unlike its predecessor known as Strip Surgery (FUT). Therefore, follicular unit extraction has become a very popular choice among men who prefer to wear their hair short.
Basic FUE hair transplant results have generally resulted in excellent coverage and surprisingly natural results. However, when performing hair transplantation for black men, special instruments and surgical protocols are required due to factors such as the unique shape of their hair follicles and the toughness of the tissues surrounding these tiny structures.
The Limits of Conventional FUE Hair Restoration for Black Men
Despite the enthusiasm for follicular unit extraction, the challenges of successful hair transplants in black men are less well known. Members of this population interested in hair loss surgery are encouraged to educate themselves about the limitations of conventional approaches.
The basic cylindrical design of classic FUE instrumentation is generally suitable for hair follicles that produce straight hair. At the same time, their skills become problematic when it comes to extracting curved hair follicles, as is the case with patients with afro-structured hair.
In black men and women, the curvature of the hair follicle is more aggressive the more the hair is curled. Due to their shape, these tiny structures present a huge risk of being damaged by the cylindrical shape of the tampon of normal FUE instruments. And since damaged transplants cannot produce new hair, it leads to disappointing growth.
In addition to the curvature problem, another challenge in black patients has to do with the thickness of the scalp tissue surrounding the hair follicle. Because of this density, surgeons have to use more force to pull out the follicular unit in order to cut each follicle. This impact further contributes to damage to the grafts.
Ultimately, ethnic FUE hair transplantation procedures for black men require specially developed extraction tools to overcome barriers of follicle shape and tissue thickness and harvest viable grafts for growth. desired hair.
The need for preliminary FUE testing
With follicular unit extraction, the success rate of patients with afro-textured hair has been estimated to be around 30-40%. Black patients who are able to achieve the desired results from FUE usually have softer scalp tissue and straight hair follicles. As a result, these people are at lower risk of sustaining transplant damage.
Black patients interested in follicular extraction performed with conventional FUE instruments are advised to undergo preliminary testing. This will help determine transection rates (ie graft damage) and their suitability for full surgery. These tests can be considered mini hair transplants. A small number of follicles are extracted and inserted to determine whether or not full growth after full surgery would be desirable.
Specialized FUE Surgical Tools for Patients of African Descent
Hair transplantation is constantly evolving to best meet the needs of patients with hair loss, including special cases such as patients with faro-textured hair. Due to structural challenges, a special FEW instrument is being developed to better address these issues.