Are you among those facing the distressing challenge of male or female pattern hair loss and thinning? If so, you’re not alone. Hair loss can significantly impact your confidence and self-esteem, and you might be looking for practical solutions to restore your once-luscious locks.
Two popular hair restoration options in Singapore are surgical hair transplants and autologous micrograft transfer, a more recent treatment. Today, we’ll be sharing the differences between these procedures, so you can make an informed decision about which suits you.
Autologous micrograft transfer
Autologous micrograft transfer is a non-surgical hair restoration technique. It inhibits hair loss and stimulates growth and thickening by activating dormant hair follicles with regenerative medicine.
Unlike surgical hair transplants, this method uses stem cells of scalp tissue from the back or sides of your head. The extracted tissues are then processed into a regenerative solution containing vitamins, nutrients and growth factors, before being injected into the bald or thinning regions of the scalp.
Autologous micrograft transplant has zero downtime and minimal risk of side effects.
These are steps involved in an autologous micrograft transfer.
The donor site is numbed with local anaesthesia. A small area is shaved to allow for precise graft extraction.
- Sample extraction
Small hair and skin grafts are extracted from the back of the scalp.
- Solution preparation
Graft samples are processed into a regenerative solution.
- Solution application
Transdermal injections are administered into the balding areas of the scalp.
- Post-procedure care
Follow the specialist’s instructions for healing and recovery.
- Hair growth and results
New hair growth can usually be seen within 30 days. You may observe hair that grows thicker and faster, with improved density. The full results, though, will take a few months to show.
Autologous micrograft transfer is generally safe but, as with any medical procedure, it comes with a few risks. These risks are rare and can be minimised when you consult an experienced professional.
FUE hair transplant
FUE hair transplant has been a popular hair restoration technique in Singapore and elsewhere since the early 2000s. It has helped many regain their lost hairlines and improve their overall appearance.
An FUE hair transplant, or follicular unit extraction, involves harvesting hair follicles from the back or sides of your scalp and transplanting them to the areas experiencing hair loss. The newly transplanted hair follicles will then grow to fill the thinning areas of the scalp, improving the appearance of your hair.
The process of extracting hair follicles is meticulous and requires surgical expertise to avoid damaging the follicles. Typically, the hair follicles are extracted in clumps to increase survival rate.
After extraction, the healthy hair follicles, called ‘grafts,’ are assessed under a microscope and stored in a specialised solution called ‘hypothermosol’ to improve survival rates before being transplanted into areas experiencing hair loss.
FUE hair transplantation is minimally invasive. You can go home right after the procedure without a hospital stay or prolonged bandaging.
- Hairline design and planning
Your doctor will plan and draw your hairline, discussing the transplant areas with you.
- Donor preparation
The donor area is prepared by trimming hairs.
The scalp is cleansed.
Your doctor administers mild sedatives and local anaesthesia to numb the donor area.
Using a motorised punch, your doctor extracts grafts while a technician carefully handles them.
- Quality assessment
Harvested grafts are checked, trimmed for quality, and sorted based on hair count.
- Recipient anaesthesia
Your doctor administers regional anaesthesia techniques to numb the recipient area.
- Recipient site making
Customised blades are used to make tiny incisions according to the hairline design.
- Graft placement
Technicians gently place the grafts back into the scalp using surgical forceps.
- Application of hair serum
A stem cell-based hair serum is applied to aid healing and hair growth.
The donor area is bandaged and instructions are given for the care of the recipient area.
- Hair growth and results
Newly implanted hairs will take three to four months to grow. The scalp takes time to adapt to the grafts and begin the hair growth cycle.
An FUE hair transplant is generally safe like the autologous micrograft transfer. It, too, however, comes with a few risks, albeit rare..
- Damage to hair follicles
- Post-procedure swelling
Which one is right for you?
Although a brief comparison will show that you can get quicker results with Autologous Micrograft Transfer than with an FUE hair transplant, one may be more suitable for you than the other.
Invasiveness and downtime
FUE: FUE is more invasive than Autologous Micrograft Transfer. It requires more downtime due to incision healing and can cause mild to moderate discomfort during the procedure.
Autologous Micrograft Transfer: Autologous Micrograft Transfer is less invasive compared to FUE. Patients typically experience minimal discomfort and no downtime.
FUE: More significant and noticeable results, especially for advanced hair loss and balding.
Autologous Micrograft Transfer: Results may vary depending on the extent of hair loss and individual response to the treatment. It may be more suitable for individuals with early-stage hair loss.
Longevity of results
FUE: Permanent results which continue to grow naturally.
Autologous Micrograft Transfer: Multiple sessions may be required for optimal outcomes. It may not be as long-lasting as FUE.
Both procedures can treat male and female pattern hair loss, but which is ultimately most suitable for you depends on your health profile and needs. It is best to make an appointment with a hair transplant clinic in Singapore and weigh your options after a thorough assessment of your condition.
At Terra Medical, we will do a thorough analysis to account for factors such as the extent of your hair thinning, the quality and quantity of donor hair, and your scalp’s condition.
Book a consultation with us today.