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Seeing people lose hair as a part of aging was a common sight a few decades ago. However, things have rapidly changed in the last few decades such as, increased pollution, increased use of chemicals for routine hair care, various poor quality hair products available out in the market, stress levels, poor food choices, etc. These have led to premature hair fall, and it is common now to see people in their 30s and sometimes even 20s have a receding hairline. Needless to say, this is a major cosmetic concern. However, the more significant concern is the impact it has on one’s personality. It reduces confidence levels and self-esteem levels, sometimes to the extent where counselling is required.
This has necessitated the search for hair loss treatment options, and the one which produced the most natural result was transplantation of hair follicles from one area of the head to another. Known as follicular unit extraction (FUE), it involves extraction of follicles from one part of the scalp and placing them into the bald parts of the scalp. This ensures natural results, which also has no chances of rejection.
As evolution continued, the next step was to use robots for this process. This has gained wide acceptance, given the improved precision and time required for the procedure. There are definitely pros and cons to the two techniques. Read on to know more.
Extraction process: With Manual FUE, hair follicles are manually removed from the identified site. However, with robotic surgery, about 1000 hair follicles are removed at one go. This improves extraction time by multiple times, and also the overall procedure time. There is a chance for fatigue to set in when done manually. However, robots don’t tire and even after an hour, the speed and accuracy of follicle extraction will not vary. The only determining success factor is the hand-eye coordination of the surgeon.
Operation process: While FUE uses incisions in the area of transplant, robotic surgery uses needles to inject the extracted follicles into the area of hair loss. This improves the postop recovery and reduces complications of bleeding and swelling, mild scarring.
Side effects: There are overall reduced side effects with robotic surgery than with manual FUE. There is less swelling and pain in the robotic process compared to the manual FUE.
Cost: There is definitely a cost difference, given that robotic surgery requires expensive equipment and technology.
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