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FUT (Strip Method) With Stitches
What to Chose?
Side Effects

Most of the side effects described here are temporary in nature and most of them are self resolving or correctible. Incidence of such side effects is mostly seen in Strip Surgery and in about 5-10 % of cases only.

1. Numbness and Sensation:

It is common to have temporary loss or change of sensation to the scalp. Occasionally, the area above the donor incision may also be affected. The tiny nerve endings located superficially throughout the skin are traumatized by the surgery resulting in the sensation change. The sensation does return to normal, but commonly this can take from 2 to 6 months. Rarely, it may take longer and very rarely, there may be small areas in which the sensation does not fully normalize. Oil massage or tapping this area with fingertip will help. Recovery of sensation is often associated with minor tingling, prickling, or itching sensations (signs of healing).

2. Discoloration of the Scalp:

For patients with medium to darker complexions, pinkness or redness of the scalp following suture removal is rarely an issue. However, for fair complexion patients a visible pinkness may persist for 3 to 6 weeks and for a small percentage of these patients, even 2 -4 months. Hypoallergenic flesh toner concealer cosmetic can be used to safely hide the pinkness. The doctor may also prescribe a cortisone cream to speed resolution. Sun exposure is best avoided, To expedite recovery use cap and sun screen.

3. Pimples /Boils:

After transplanted the old hair shaft sheds and makes way for the new one. Sometimes the old hair gets stuck and causes a minor local inflammation - folliculitis. These are self-resolving and should be left alone. However, if you experience many happening simultaneously, it is best to see the doctor for a follow-up evaluation. These pimples are surface irritation as the hair emerges and only rarely represent ingrown hairs. It has no effect on the final growth, happens more often in hot weather and those sweat a lot.
Management is simple - remove the old hair shaft, squeeze out the pus, and apply antibiotic cream... Steroid cream and Doxycyline 100 mg under doctor’s guidance may be necessary for a few cases.

4. Discomfort, pain or Hypersensitivity:

The area of stitches in strip surgery may have discomfort sometimes described as tightness esp. while sleeping and typically while sleeping. Use of Neck pillow and changing the sides may be useful for this period. The painkiller may help to relieve the pain in a few cases. Occasional cases of FUE may have hypersensitive skin esp. in donor area. None of these usually last for more than a few days. None of these symptoms are to the scale of unbearable.

5. Itching, Scales and dryness:

When the wounds are healed scalp especially in Recipient area may feel scaly (dandruff like scales) and dryness due to reduced natural skin oil secretion in this period may cause itchiness. Keeping the scalp clean by removing these scales by regular wash and use of some emollients like Hair oil or scalp conditioner relieves this.

6. Problems related to Stitches in Strip Surgery:

5-10 % of people undergoing Strip Procedure in spite of the best techniques and educated judgment by the Doctor across the world may encounter problems due to stitches such as Foreign Body reaction, delayed absorption and spitting of stitches, stitch abscess. Widened scar may be seen in some skins or in athletes. Tightness of scalp, Painful scar, long term parasthesia or reduced sensation above the linear mark may be seen rarely. Even trichophytic closure may encounter problems such as abnormal hair direction of hair growing through the scar. Fortunately most of these problems are treatable and are not of serious nature.

FUE does not have stitches and therefore avoids all such problems.

7. Tight Scalp :

For a few days after Strip surgery some people may have a feeling of tightness. This usually disappears in few days. Repeated strip surgery or wide strip removal may leave the tight scalp skin.  This is usually not the case in FUE.

8. Shock loss:

Due to the Minimally invasive nature of FUE the incidence of Shock loss is believed to be much less in donor area compared to that in Strip surgery with more invasive nature. This is usually a temporary loss and may take few weeks to few months to fully recover. This is not permanent.

9. Donor thinning:

In a low-density donor area (more common in Orientals and Africans) uneducated and concentrated extraction from one area higher number of FUE extraction can make some people feel donor area thinning.

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