There are many different words and terms that are frequently used in the hair transplant industry as well as among doctors who perform this procedure. While some terms might be easy to understand others are more complex. Those individuals who consider a hair transplant procedure will benefit greatly from understanding what all the different terms mean. Knowing some of the most commonly used terms will also prove helpful during the hair transplant consultation, which is something all prospective hair transplant clients will need.
When talking about thinning hair doctors might refer to alopecia, which simply means loss of hair and can be the result of different causes. But involuntary, or androgenic alopecia, is the most common form and means that hair is lost for genetic reasons. Hair transplant doctors might also mention male or female pattern baldness and both can be the result of aging, genes and hormones, but the main difference between the genders is the pattern in which the hair is lost. Females often experience overall thinning of the hair while men tend to keep the sides and the back and loose most of the hair that is on top.
A hair transplant can correct most types of hair loss, and usually means that hair will be transplanted from less important areas of the client scalp, such as the back and sides, to more important ones like the top and frontal parts of the head. At this point the doctor will mention donor and recipient areas of the scalp: the donor area is from where hairs are taken and the recipient area is where hairs are inserted. Doctors also commonly use the word “site” instead of area, but they have the same meaning.
Follicular units are groups of hair as they naturally occur and can contain anywhere from 1 to 5 hairs with 2 being the most common. Follicular unit grafts are commonly used by hair transplant doctors today because they produce natural looking results. Follicular Unit Extraction, also called FUE, means that these follicular units will be extracted directly from the scalp and later inserted as needed. Follicular Unit Transplantation, which is the same thing as the FUT and Strip method, means that a strip of skin will be removed where after hairs will be harvested and inserted as follicular units. This method might also be called follicular unit micrografting.
The size of the hair grafts that will be transplanted will be determined by the doctor, but many hair transplant doctors are moving towards smaller grafts, because they lead to superior results. Micro-grafts contain one or two hairs while mini-grafts contain between three and six hairs. Micro-grafts are to be preferred as they produce better results. Creating a natural looking result that no one can detect is the ultimate goal in hair transplantation today. The aforementioned terms do not cover all the hair transplant related words that are used, but are certainly a good start for anyone considering a hair transplant.