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  • By Alan J. Bauman, M.D.

    Although linear harvesting or ‘the strip-method’ is the least expensive way to transplant hair, it can lead to a ‘tell-tale’ donor scar which may be visible from a distance if not covered with enough surrounding hair.

    This recent photo of Jeremy Piven (courtesy: TMZ) reveals a particulary wide, likely non-trichophytic, linear donor hair transplant scar.

    Jeremy Piven, Plastic Surgery

    To avoid a linear scar in the first place, consider hair transplantation with the FUE or Follicular Unit Extraction approach.  A new device, called NeoGraft, allows the surgical team to efficiently transplant more hair follicles during an FUE procedure than before.  YouTube celeb Kevin ’Nalts’ Nalty and Actor/Director Greg Benson (Mediocre Films) both recently underwent FUE/NeoGraft hair transplants and documented their experiences on YouTube.  FUE with NeoGraft, as seen recently on Rachael Ray “Plastic Surgery Breakthroughs,” allows the harvesting of follcicles from the donor area without the use of a scalpel, stitches or staples.  And, while no procedure can be 100% scar-free, after a matter of days healing is complete and undetectable from a social distance–even with a very short haircut.

    If you must undergo a linear harvest (perhaps due to budget or extensive hair loss), be sure your hair transplant surgeon is adept at ‘trichophytic closures.’  A trichophytic closure or tricho-closure is a microsurgical closure technique which allows hair to eventually grow hair through the scar–helping to camouflage it.

    Tricho-closures are not a 100% perfect solution, but typically allow for shorter haircuts than non-trichophytic linear closures.  Also, in preparation for your transplant, let your hair length in the donor area grow to at least 1 inch.  This will allow camouflage of the stitches immediately following a linear harvest.

    If you’ve already had a linear harvest and have a troublesome scar, all is not lost!  A small FUE/NeoGraft hair transplant procedure can be used to redistribute healthy donor hair follicles into the scar tissue left from hair transplants or scars from other scalp surgery, thereby camouflaging it.   Linear Scar Camouflage procedures typically require about 250-350 follicular-unit grafts and now with NeoGraft, can often be completed in just an hour or two.   Sometimes, more than one scar-camouflage procedure is needed, depending on the severity of the scar.   Again, scar-camouflage procedures are not a 100% cure for a bad scar, but they can often dramatically improve the coverage with just a single FUE/NeoGraft session.

    Below is an example of an FUE/NeoGraft donor area Before, Immediately After and One-Week After harvesting of 1600+ Follicular-unit grafts.  More FUE donor area photos, including extraction and implantation pictures are on flickr.

    Hair Transplant, Plastic Surgery

    My suggestion to Mr. Piven would be to consider FUE/NeoGraft hair transplant procedure to camouflage the linear donor scar.

    –Dr. B.

    About Alan J. Bauman

    Alan Bauman, Plastic Surgery

    Dr. Alan Bauman is a physician who specializes in cosmetic treatments for hair loss and hair restoration as well as fat-reduction, body-contouring and anti-aging skin care/facial rejuvenation. You can visit www.baumanmedical.com or www.baumanblog.com for more info on medical treatments to maintain, enhance and regrow hair and www.bocalipo.com for body-contouring/fat reduction.

    Ask Dr. Alan Bauman A Question on Makemeheal.com



    8 Comments so far

    1. Plastic Surgery Loans on January 12, 2010 2:17 am

      Wow, that looks rather painful if I do say so myself!

    2. Dr. Alan Bauman on January 13, 2010 3:59 am

      Looking painful and being painful can be two different things. Careful application of computerized local anesthetic using CompuMed/TheWand, for example, should make a hair transplant virtually painless regardless of the technique used. The NeoGraft FUE no-stitch/no-scalpel technique is much less invasive than ‘linear’ or strip harvesting, also causes less deep trauma/discomfort and heals completely in just days with no linear scar. –Dr. B.

      Hair transplants should put a smile on the FRONT of your face. Even by yesteryear’s standards, something may not have gone as planned here…

    3. Plastic surgeon on January 15, 2010 4:55 am

      I would agree with the writer of this article, that for some people, who are having the hair problem condition the hair-loss-surgery, is the only way. However, before you go for the surgery, do your research on all the risk possibilities. The things can be considered such as, Plastic surgery

    4. nalts on January 22, 2010 2:34 pm

      1) If you do FUE in the first place you won’t have to get plastic surgery to hide a scar. And if you’ve already had a scalp incision you can just do FUE next time.
      2) I’m a pain baby and this was not painful. I had a mild headache afterwards (long day). And some of the itchy stuff. But no pain after initial injection of the whatsamacallit lidocaine or whatever.

    5. shereeh hussein on February 11, 2010 1:04 pm

      Really I am very interested in details of the procedure.I m a physician and i ve many patients who require such safe restoration

    6. New York liposuctions on March 2, 2010 2:43 am

      This is literally terrible and am scared if i had to do the same, but still happy to know that the process is successful in its operation. Cure and recovery is also well and good.

    7. Vince on October 29, 2010 2:04 am

      That scar pic is of a fresh strip scar NOT a “particulary wide, likely non-trichophytic” scar.

      You push FUE so of course you crap talk strip. Your a hack. How many guys have you ruined for life and robbed? Why hasn’t your youtube comedian patient shown off his results he was so excited about? Yeah….

    8. aidan on January 29, 2011 6:53 am

      Hi Dr. Bauman

      thanks heaps for posting this article, the past few hours i have been looking into the procedures you have performed on youtube and reading various other articles.

      Do you happen to know if there is anyone in New Zealand or Australia doing this same procedure?

      If I were able to I’d fly to the states but im barely out of university so money is tight

      thanks again

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