Posted on April - 07 - 2013
Strip surgery is when a strip of hair bearing scalp is removed from the back of the scalp to capture the hair follicles. The donor area is then sutured closed. This can be done with minimal visible scarring if done carefully and properly. The recovery is more uncomfortable than a FUE (follicular unit extraction) technique, such as the NeoGraft, but discomfort is not too bad in either case in my opinion, and I have personally had the NeoGraft procedure done.
FUE procedures such as the NeoGraft involve removing a circular 1 mm graft which contain from one to four follicles within each graft. For a 1500 graft procedure, there would therefore be 1500 individual grafts taken, rather than the strip of scalp. The NeoGraft is an automated FUE procedure, which is very effective. FUE procedures can also be done manually, but it is very time consuming, which limits the number of grafts that can be taken in one session. The NeoGraft is the most modern method up to this date.
Advantages and disadvantages are:
NeoGraft FUE procedures require cutting the hair very short (almost to the scalp) in the donor area, which is the back and sometimes the sides of the scalp behind the ears. This can be quite a large area.
Strip surgery only requires shaving a 1.5 millimeter area at the donor site, and this part of the scalp will be removed to capture the grafts. Again, the edges of the scalp are sutured together leaving very little hairless scalp, but the hair grows very fast in the back of the scalp. Generally, the donor area is covered with hair in a week or less. This is s small inconvenience considering that most hair follicles will grow for many decades.
For women, we usually use the strip procedure as most have longer hair that would hide any donor scar, and it would take many months, if not years, for a woman to grow adequate hair length back in the shaved area of scalp.
For men, I prefer the NeoGraft because of the lack of a scar, especially when they prefer to wear their hair short. Plus, we can pick and chose the grafts we want instead of being obligated to use those from the strip.
Recovery time discomfort is less with the NeoGraft and there are no sutures to be removed. Pain is virtually non-existent, in my opinion. Recovery time is also less with the NeoGraft because of no need for suture removal.
Both procedures can yield very natural hair growth, and this is more related to the skill and expertise of the surgeon or specialist performing the procedure more so than the technique or equipment (strip or NeoGraft), as with any of the procedures.
Dr. E. Ronald Finger
Website: Finger & Associates