Dr. Torgerson’s FUE Timeline: A Step-by-Step Guide for 2019
Dr. Cory Torgerson’s FUE expertise brings him hair transplant clients from across Canada. The Toronto Hair Transplant Clinic caters to men and women of all backgrounds who share at least one thing in common — unwanted hair loss. If you’ve been considering follicular unit extraction (FUE), Dr. Torgerson will be pleased to meet with you free of charge to provide the scalp analysis, strategic planning, and information needed to proceed. Dr. Torgerson’s hair transplant clinic offers discreet, personalized care, which includes methods and excellent medications or non-surgical treatments too. Want to know what Dr. Torgerson’s FUE timeline is? Check out this step-by-step guide.
At Dr. Torgerson’s clinic, FUE remains one of the leading choices for lasting, natural-looking hair restoration. Between 500 and 2,500 grafts can be relocated on the scalp within one day. Patients return home and to their normal schedule quickly because FUE delivers rapid recovery. One of the primary benefits of modern, digitally assisted NeoGraft or SmartGraft technology is the nearly invisible scarring, which is typically undetectable to the naked eye. Compared with the strip harvesting (FUT) methods of the past, avoiding a long scalp scar is very attractive.
You may view FUE before and after photos online and wonder, just what’s involved? How does a hair transplant regrow hair, and how long is the recovery? In this guide to FUE, Dr. Torgerson will outline the key stages in recovery so that you know what to expect and approach your treatment with not only excitement, but realistic expectations.
Dr. Torgerson’s FUE Advice: Be Patient
Note: you may actually lose hair initially! It takes time for newly transplanted grafts to “root” themselves, establish a blood supply, then begin growing new hairs. FUE with Dr. Torgerson’s hair transplant team may take between 3 to 8 hours, but that’s only the beginning. When people aren’t informed about the post-procedure timeline, they may feel unnecessarily frustrated. In fact, some people are alarmed as their implanted hairs fall out a few weeks after surgery. (Yes, that is a normal occurrence.) Your hair follicles adhere to regular growth cycles, and any disruption or trauma can cause a temporary “shock loss” wherein follicles let go of strands, then begin growing new ones.
A key fact to understand for your peace of mind is that hair transplants don’t just relocate individual strands. The follicle functions like a micro-hair factory that is the source of hair and the precious element of a hair graft. The follicular unit punch tool excises micro-segments of the scalp along with the hair roots and follicle. Each tiny piece of tissue to be transplanted will contain 1 to 4 hairs. That means between 1 and 4 follicles, and these are what you need to relocate. After implantation, you’ll see the grafts heal, then likely shed the hairs they brought with them. Don’t fear, new hairs are on their way.
The Day of Your FUE
Your scalp will numbed, and tiny groupings of hair follicles will be removed from your donor area, then reinserted into little slits made at the balding sites. Your hairline and fill strategy will be artistically planned in detail before proceeding. FUE hair transplant techniques create realistic, natural hairlines and growth patterns in the hands of an expert. This procedure doesn’t require stitches, and the incision sites close within a few days.
As with any invasive treatment, Dr. Torgerson’s FUE patients can expect some sensitivity or swelling after their transplant. However, most inflammation is well managed with over-the-counter pain medication and keeping the head elevated.
Mild bleeding can occur at the donor sites for a few days. Apply gentle pressure with a clean, damp cloth if needed. Your surgeon will advise you to avoid known blood thinners, including supplements, and to pause all aerobic activity, which can increase bleeding. Dr. Torgerson’s FUE patients are given his personal cell phone number to reach him with any concerns after hours such as bleeding or other concerning symptoms.
Swelling is a normal side effect of FUE transplants and may spread over the forehead somewhat if the hairline has received implants. You’ll need to prop up the head of your bed and ensure that you don’t bend over or do heavy lifting until you’re given the all clear.
Most swelling will subside within 3 days, and the small openings created by the FUE device will close. The next phase involves a few changes. You’ll see tiny scabs form around individual implant grafts. You’ll have detailed instructions to gently wash and rinse your scalp. Don’t pick or scratch those scabs! This can be tricky, because you may feel itchy while healing. Ask your surgeon to provide anti-itch medication, topical treatments, or other comfort measures to reduce the sensation, because scratching at scabs could dislodge or damage grafts.
During the brief “scab” phase, Dr. Torgerson’s FUE patients usually wear a soft hat or work from home until the scabs soften and fall off. This occurs between 7 and 10 days on average.
Avoid aerobic activity or strenuous exercise. That means you’ll have to skip the gym, jogging, and even sex for a short time. When you elevate your heart rate and blood pressure, you increase the pressure in all of the tiny blood vessels in your scalp. You run the risk of damaging delicate new connections, increasing bleeding, or pushing out grafts. Your surgeon may permit you to resume workouts at roughly 1 week or shortly afterwards.
If you’re prescribed an antibiotic, ensure that you take it for the entire course. Though complications from FUE are rare, avoiding infection is a critical factor that’s very much in your hands once you go home.
Avoid swimming until you have completely healed. Dr. Torgerson and other FUE surgeons in Toronto will advise you to wait 2 weeks before submerging your head in a pool, a hot tub, the ocean, or even a bath. The risk of infection from tiny bacteria in most water is a risk that you shouldn’t take. Eventually, you’ll be able to swim and live life freely with your new hair.
Avoid the use of non-essential hair care, including heat styling, hair dye, or heavy products, for at least a few weeks. Chemicals applied to a healing scalp can impair your progress and increase inflammation.
Do keep your post-op appointments. There’s not much to do while waiting to heal, but seeing your surgeon will keep you on track and help prevent issues. The surgeon can encourage you about your progress as well.
Speaking of patience, when does the new hair grow?
Dr. Torgerson’s FUE clients don’t usually see new hairs until 3 to 4 months after surgery. It’s often that stretch of time that is most disheartening. During Phase One after FUE, transplanted hairs fall out, and patients go back to looking more or less how they did before the procedure. It’s even more important to stay in touch with your hair surgeon during that time to be reminded how much is going on under the surface. While it appears that nothing has changed on the outside, your follicles are in the telogen stage for a few months and are gearing up to enter anagen, the growth stage.
Sometimes, treatments like PRP for hair are added post-FUE to boost healing and trigger follicles into the anagen stage faster. Results are variable, but hair transplant surgeons in Canada have been using PRP as an adjunct therapy for improved FUE results for years. Because this solution contains a high number of growth factors, the stimulation of new blood vessels and cell growth can be triggered to speed up slightly. However, growth cycles are necessary and natural, so there will be some waiting to do, regardless. Ask your Toronto FUE surgeon if they recommend PRP for you.
Finally, the results of your hair transplant begin to show. The hairs will be wispy at first and may be patchy, but they will improve each month. During this phase, both your donor and recipient sites will be completely healed, so your scalp won’t look as though you’ve had a hair transplant. It will just look like hair is growing in more each day.
It can be challenging to style the new hair. You’re welcome to visit the salon and cut and style your hair, but rest assured that eventually it will conform to the direction and texture of the native hairs.
8 to 18 months: Mature Hair, Final Results
Though Dr. Torgerson’s FUE patients can consider their results “complete” by roughly 12 months, the hair will often thicken and improve in texture throughout the next year.
By one-year post-FUE, you should see roughly 80% of your full hair growth. You’ll be combing, cutting, styling, and doing whatever you wish with it.
Because everyone’s hair loss proceeds differently and people have unique expectations, sometimes people plan additional hair transplants. Dr. Torgerson’s FUE clients may undergo their first session in their 20s and another in 5 years. Sometimes people are satisfied with their results for a decade or more, but see additional thinning appear at some point.
The follicles that you transfer during surgery carry a natural DHT resistance with them from the donor site. They tend to resist the falling out that the DHT hormone causes. However, the original hairs at your crown may continue to shed over time. For that reason, it’s a good idea to discuss your long-term strategy in detail with an experienced FUE surgeon. Planning for not just immediate results, but also extended benefits down the road is crucial.
Once you’ve completely healed and you see the full results of your FUE, you can discuss additional sessions for more coverage, if desired.
To discuss hair loss prevention or FUE, Dr. Torgerson will be pleased to meet you for a complimentary consultation. Call today, and let’s get started.