Hair Transplant Surgery

These days hair restoration surgery, when done right, can restore a full looking head of hair that is completely natural. But results vary depending on the technique and skill of the physician and staff.

Choose an elite Coalition physician in your area, who has been carefully prescreened by patients and peers for providing proven and consistent quality results.

Learn more about state of the art hair transplantation below.

  • Hair Transplant Surgery

    Hair Transplant Surgery

    Currently the only solution for regrowing hair, particularly in the hairline area, is hair transplant surgery, an advanced surgical hair restoration technique.

    Done right, a hair transplant is so natural that even a hair stylist cannot detect that a person has had hair transplants.

    The days of the "corn row" or "Barbie Doll" hair transplants are long gone.

    To achieve such truly natural results requires a dedicated and highly skilled staff doing a state of the art hair transplant procedure. The state of the art micro hair transplant procedure that our member physicians perform is called "Ultra Refined Follicular Unit Hair Transplantation".

    Hair transplant surgery involves relocating (transplanting) the bald resistant hair follicles from the back of the head to the balding areas on the top and front of the head.

    This process is effective and will last a lifetime because the hair follicles taken from the back of the head are genetically resistant to baldness, no matter where they are transplanted.

    This procedure is regarded by most hair restoration physicians to be the "gold standard in hair transplants". Learn more about this hair transplant procedure.

    Because this very refined procedure is difficult to perform at the highest quality level only a minority of all hair restoration surgeons perform it successfully. Our member physicians have extensive experience performing this advanced and very refined procedure with excellent proven results.

    Today, hair transplant surgical hair restoration is an out-patient procedure requiring only local anesthesia. Most patients are surprised by how little discomfort they experience during and after their surgery. Many patients watch TV or sleep during their procedure.

    Hair transplant surgery is the only certain way of restoring significant amounts of hair in balding areas. View hair transplant photos of actual hair loss patients.

    Sharing information in the Hair Loss Learning Center forum with patients who have successfully restored their hair is a good way to begin the process of selecting a hair transplant surgeon with a proven record of restoring a natural hairline. Online consultation can put you directly in touch with one of the world's top hair restoration physicians in your area who can help you assess your options.

  • Ultra Refined Follicular Unit Hair Transplantation

    Ultra Refined Follicular Unit Hair Transplantation

    The Ultimate in fullness and naturalness in one surgery session.

    We’ve all seen the “pluggy” hair transplants of the past. But we don’t see today’s state of the art hair transplants because they go unnoticed.

    Corn RowsMini MicroFollicular units
    Plugs Mini Micros Follicular Units

    Follicular Evolution - from plugs to micro grafts to ultra refined grafts

    Surgical hair restoration has dramatically evolved from the big round “plug” grafts of the 1960 ’s and 70’s, to the “mini micrografts” of the 80’s and early 90’s, to modern hair transplant procedures using entirely follicular unit grafts .

    Now hair restoration surgery is going through another important evolution that is improving both the naturalness and fullness that can be achieved from any one surgical hair transplant session.

    Ultra Refined Grafting - Smaller Blades, Incisions and Grafts

    Today ’s micro surgical blades, like the size of hair grafts, have become ever smaller and now enable hair transplant surgeons to safely make more tiny graft incisions in a given area then ever before. Surgeons are then able to “dense pack” select areas with as many as 40 to 60 follicular unit grafts per square centimeter. This graft density is as much as twice that of the standard follicular unit hair transplant procedure.

    FUT result

    FUT Result

    Such high densities of transplanted hair typically produce the appearance of fullness even after only one surgical session. Patients also experience rapid healing and no visible skin distortions due to the tiny size of these incisions.

    Ultra Refined Follicular Unit Grafting - Hard on the clinic but easy on the patient.

    Ultra refined follicular unit grafting raises the bar for physicians and their staff. This delicate and demanding hair transplant procedure requires more skill and careful attention to be performed properly. The smaller and more tightly packed incisions require more closely dissected follicular unit grafts that are carefully trimmed under microscopes. These small and densely packed incisions are also more difficult to place the grafts into.

    This procedure also requires more careful patient selection, as “dense packing” of grafts is not appropriate for all patients.

    Ultra Refined Follicular Unit Transplantation – the new “Gold Standard”

    Natural hair hair transplant hair line

    In the hands of a highly skilled physician and staff the Ultra refined follicular unit hair transplant procedure can achieve excellent new hair growth that is so natural that it is undetectable even under close scrutiny.

    While the standard micro “follicular unit” hair transplant does produce natural looking results, its ability to achieve high density in only one surgical session is limited. Thus patients may have to do subsequent surgical sessions in a transplanted area to achieve a full look.

    The many patient benefits of this new procedure are significant and include:

    • The ability to get excellent hair density in only one surgical session.
    • Minimal trauma in the graft recipient area with rapid post surgical healing.
    • Little or no visible pitting or distortions in the transplanted areas.
    • More natural direction and angulation of the transplanted hair.

    Coalition of Independent Hair Restoration Physicians All members of the Coalition of Independent Hair Restoration Physiciansare required to perform ultra refined grafting with excellent results. Learn more about the membership standards.

  • FUE – a new way of doing Follicular Unit Hair Transplantation

    FUE – a new way of doing Follicular Unit Hair Transplantation

    Follicular unit extraction is a minimally invasive procedure for performing follicular unit hair transplantation. However, unlike the predominant follicular unit transplant procedure, in which a strip of donor tissue is removed and dissected under magnification, the FUE procedure uses a small punch to extract each follicular unit one by one.

    Both the strip excision and FUE procedures create 1, 2, 3, and 4 hair follicular unit grafts that are then transplanted into the balding area in the same manner. The primary difference between these two procedures is the technique used to harvest the follicular unit grafts.

    Comparing the Strip Excision procedure to the Extraction (FUE) procedure

    The common strip excision method of performing follicular unit hair transplantation involves surgically excising a thin horizontal strip of bald resistant skin from the donor area.

    Strip Excision Procedure 

    Donor strip being excised
    Donor strip being excised


    Incision sutured together
    Incision sutured together


    Hair combed down after suturing
    Hair combed down after suturing


    This donor area is then sutured together. These sutures (either stitches or staples) are then typically removed about ten days after surgery. Some physicians use dissolvable sutures so that no removal is needed.


    Patient’s donor area 2 months after surgery
    Patient’s donor area 2 months after surgery


    Once this linear incision is fully healed the patient is left with a thin horizontal scar in the back of the head. This scar is typically hard to detect since the surrounding hair conceals it, even when the hair is cut short.

    To view a video of an actual strip excision surgery.

    How the FUE Procedure is performed

    With the Follicular Unit Extraction or FUE procedure 1, 2, 3, and 4 hair follicular unit grafts are carefully extracted one at a time using a tiny punch of one millimeter or less. Often the surgeon requires the patient to buzz cut a portion of their donor area so that they are able to see the patient’s scalp.

    The follicular units are extracted
    The follicular units are extracted


    The follicular units are extracted by placing the punch around a single follicular unit and cutting a small circle through the skin around that follicular unit. The follicular unit is then gently pulled up and away from the loose tissue underneath the skin.

    The small hole left behind after the follicle is extracted then heals over the following week. Normally this small round incision contracts as it heals making the resulting round scar smaller than the size of the 1mm punch that made the incision. The FUE patient ultimately ends up with hundreds of small round white scars, which are normally not detectable once the patient’s hair grows out.View a video of an actual FUE surgery.

    To Extract or to Excise, that is the question.

    Advocates for the relatively new FUE procedure claim that this procedure produces less noticeable scarring and no tightness or numbness in the donor area since no donor tissue has been pulled together and sutured. Many patients and physicians find the claim that FUE produces less visible scarring to be debatable.

    Some physicians and patients also have concerns about the relatively new FUE procedure, such as the lack of formal studies regarding the percentage of follicles that may or may not be transected during the sight unseen extraction process.

    In addition, since the physician must personally extract all follicles, one by one, the FUE procedure is very physician dependent and thus very expensive. The FUE procedure also requires considerably more time in surgery to move a given amount of hair to the balding area.

    The standard strip excision procedure has the advantage of utilizing a collaborative team to carefully create the grafts once the donor tissue is removed in a strip. This collaborative approach enables a well trained staff to do sessions of 2,000 to 3,000 all follicular unit grafts in a single day. This team approach enables a patient to get a much larger number of grafts/hairs in one sitting at a much lower cost per hair than with the FUE procedure.

    However, some believe that despite being relatively costly the FUE procedure may be appropriate for patients who have very limited elasticity in their donor area or who only need a small number of grafts.

  • Lateral Slit Technique

    Lateral Slit Technique

    Over the past several years surgeons have used various techniques to perform follicular unit hair transplantation. One such technique is the Lateral Slit Technique, also known as Coronal or Perpendicular Grafting. This technique’s name is derived from the angle and direction in which the graft incisions are made.

    While there are other techniques for performing densely packed and highly refined follicular unit transplantation, the lateral slit technique offers a high degree of control over the angle and direction in which the transplanted hairs will ultimately grow.

    The lateral slit technique has been used both intuitively and systematically for years by hair restoration physicians. However, it has recently gained popularity as a systematic and precise way of performing follicular unit hair transplantation.

    How our member physicians use the Lateral Slit Technique.

    Many of our physician members use the Lateral Slit Technique exclusively or in combination with other techniques for creating graft incisions. The lateral slit technique enables a surgeon to create graft incisions at varying angles (ranging from 10 to 90 degrees to the scalp), including very acute angles that will make the transplanted hair grow out lying flatter to the scalp. The ability to create incisions at very acute angles is particularly useful in areas such as the front temples and sides where the hair normally grows out lying flat on the scalp.

    The graft incision determines the direction of the hair growth

    The lateral slit technique also helps enable a surgeon to determine the direction of the graft incisions. This then determines the ultimate direction of the transplanted hairs growth. Thus a surgeon can use this technique to control and vary both the direction and angle at which the transplanted hair will grow in order to mimic the subtle changes in hair direction that occur naturally.

    Each graft incision is created by analyzing the neighboring hair so the surgeon can reproduce the correct hair pattern. As a result, as each transplanted hair emerges from the scalp it will grow and lay in a similar direction as its neighboring non-transplanted hairs.

    Lateral slits can enable denser packing of grafts

    Lateral slit incisions also tend to be more parallel to the scalp and thus more superficial and less invasive to the scalp’s underlying vascular structure. This parallel alignment also enables a physician to place more grafts per square centimeter with out the grafts compressing or popping up since the pressure exerted on the grafts does not push them upward from the scalp.

    Using blades cut to the size of the grafts

    Some of our members use custom blade cutters to create tiny blades to make incisions that match the size and depth of each follicular unit graft being transplanted. This enables a surgeon to safely dense pack more grafts into a given area during a surgical session. Healing time is also more rapid, with minimal scarring.

    Typically most clinic’s blades range from 1.5mm to 2mm in size. However, by using the custom blade cutter our physicians can create blades as small as .7mm for a single hair graft and .9mm for a multi hair graft.

    In addition, the blades created by the custom cutter are squared off to match the shape of the bulb end of a hair follicle. Non custom cut blades are typically spear pointed which requires them to be inserted deeper thus causing more trauma to the scalps vascular structure.

    The ability to control the depth of the incision each blade makes is also critical. Each blade is placed in a blade holder that is set to not allow the blade to go any deeper than required for the graft to being placed in the incision. This minimizes unnecessary trauma to the deep vasculature of the scalp, thus enabling close tight incisions, minimal tissue swelling, and quick healing that leaves no visible scaring, pitting, or cobble stoning of the scalp.

    Placing grafts to maximize their aesthetic result and coverage

    The plane and direction in which each follicular unit graft is placed on the scalp can also impact the ultimate appearance of density that can be produced with a given number of grafts. This is because hairs within a follicular unit are typically next to each other inline.

    Therefore by arranging each multiple hair graft on the scalp in a linear fashion to the line of sight, each follicular unit will provide the maximum appearance of fullness and scalp coverage. This also mimics how hair is normally aligned on the scalp.

    Special thanks to Dr. DeYarman, Dr. Sharon Keene, Dr. Jerry Cooley, Dr. Alexander, and Dr. Glenn Charles for contributing their expertise and photos for this section.


  • Hair transplants - Are they right for you?

    Hair transplants - Are they right for you?

    Most hair loss sufferers can benefit from hair transplants. However, some are better candidates than others and will achieve more dramatic results.

    Different Patients Achieve Different End Results

    Two Hair Transplant Sessions one totaling 1860 grafts the other 2995 grafts
    Two Hair Transplant Sessions one totaling 1860 grafts the other 2995 grafts

    It is important to have realistic expectations and to find a hair transplant surgeon who can meet or exceed your expectations.

    Surgical hair restoration is largely a matter of "Supply and Demand".

    The look you can and will achieve with hair transplants is determined by several factors. But the most critical factor is really a question of "supply and demand".


    The supply of hair is how much viable bald resistant donor hair you have. The demand is how much bald area you want to cover and to what degree of thickness.

    Your “Donor Hair” determines what you can achieve.

    For virtually all hair loss sufferers, even those with severe baldness, there is typically hair that grows for life on the sides and back of the head. This is because the hair in this "donor area" is genetically different from the hair on the top of the head in people who go bald.

    The hair follicles in the "donor area" are genetically resistant to the effects of such baldness causing hormones as (DHT) dihydrotestosterone. That's why they continue to grow, while the hair on the top (in the male pattern baldness area) thins and goes bald over time.

    How much viable donor hair you have will largely determine how much you can accomplish with hair transplants. Most people have enough viable donor hair to do at least one or two hair transplant procedures.

  • A Hair Transplant - How to do it right.

    A Hair Transplant - How to do it right.

    Today it is a very refined outpatient procedure that can produce full and natural looking results, even after only one hair transplant session.

    When performed correctly not even a hair stylist will detect that a person has had a hair transplant.

    However, to achieve such natural results it is critical that the hair transplant procedure be "performed correctly". To do so requires a hair restoration clinic that can perform a follicular unit hair transplant at the highest levels of skill, experience, and dedication.

    What it takes to create natural results.

    A great hair transplant is the result of using a state of the art surgical procedure and performing it with great skill and artistry. Today the acknowledged "gold standard" in hair transplant surgery is called "Ultra Refined Follicular Unit Hair Transplantation".

    This relatively new hair transplant procedure enables a patient to achieve extremely natural results because it recreates and mimics the way a person's hair grows naturally, hair for hair.

    Recreating Nature Hair for Hair

    To understand this procedure you must first understand how hair grows naturally.

    If you look closely at naturally growing hair using magnification you will see that hair actually grows in groupings of one, two, three, and four hairs.

    These naturally occurring hair groupings grow in irregular patterns on the scalp similar to trees growing in the forest. These groupings are technically referred to as "follicular units".

    By relocating these carefully prepared and isolated follicular units, physicians doing "follicular unit hair transplantation" recreate a natural pattern of hair in the balding areas.

    Follicular Unit Hair Transplant tough on the clinic but easy on the patient.

    To do this properly is a very time consuming process. It requires a team of skilled and meticulous medical technicians working closely with the lead physician.

    All our physician members perform this hair transplant procedure with excellent results. They are granted membership in the Coalition of Independent Hair Restoration Physicians strictly based on their proven high level of experience, ethics, and skill in successfully performing this patient friendly procedure.

    While the follicular unit procedure is more demanding upon the medical staff, it produces dramatic and life long advantages for the patient such as undetectable naturalness, rapid healing, and optimal use of their limited donor hair.

    The Standard Hair Transplant, easy on the clinic but not on the patient.

    Only a minority of hair transplant surgeons are committed to doing the follicular unit procedure properly. Many physicians continue to dissect grafts without regard to the integrity of the follicular units. Follicular units are often transected and damaged as donor tissue is cut to conform to the size of the recipient holes rather than to maintain the integrity of the follicular units.

    Such common standard hair transplant procedures are quicker and simpler to perform than follicular unit hair transplantation from the hair transplant surgeon's perspective. The standard hair transplant procedure is also often more profitable for the clinic since it requires less staff time, training, resources, and skill. However, the results are generally suboptimal for the patient.

    Respecting the Follicular Unit

    Respecting the Follicular Unit

    Each follicular unit is surrounded by small glands, blood vessels, nerves, and a connective tissue sac making it a tiny self contained unit.

    If these follicular units are damaged during removal or dissection, the hair may grow poorly.

    Therefore it is important to cut only in the loose tissue between the follicular units to keep each follicular unit intact and avoid damaging it.

  • Follicular Unit Hair Transplantation - Step by Step

    Follicular Unit Hair Transplantation - Step by Step

    We believe that patients have a right to full disclosure and a complete understanding of exactly what hair restoration surgery involves.

    This step by step presentation shows how today’s state of the art follicular unit hair transplant procedure is typically performed.

    Step 1 - hair transplant donor area

    Patient is prepared for surgery

    During surgery hair follicles from the back of the head that are genetically resistant to going bald will be removed and relocated (transplanted) to the balding areas.

    Step 2 - Patient is prepared for surgery

    Donor area is trimmed

    Prior to surgery, the hair in donor area that will be surgically removed is trimmed.

    Donor area is prepared for surgery

    Once the donor area has been prepared it is given local anesthesia.

    Donor tissue is removed

    Donor tissue is removed

    The donor tissue containing the bald resistant hair follicles is then surgically removed.

    Donor area is sutured

    Donor area is sutured

    The donor tissue containing the bald resistant hair follicles is then surgically removed.

    Hair combed over sutures

    Hair combed over sutures

    When patient’s hair is combed over the donor area the sutures are not visible. These sutures are typically removed approximately ten days after surgery.

    Donor tissue is trimmed into follicular unit grafts

    Donor tissue is trimmed into follicular unit grafts

    Surgical technicians then use microscopes to view the donor tissue in order to dissect and prepare follicular units hair grafts.

    Bald recipient area is prepared

    Bald recipient area is prepared

    After being given local anesthesia, the balding recipient area is ready for surgery. No trimming or shaving of hair is needed in the top recipient area.

    Incisions are made in the balding areas

    Incisions are made in the balding areas

    Tiny incisions are made in the recipient areas in irregular patterns that mimic nature. The follicular unit grafts will then be placed carefully into these tiny incisions.

    Grafts are placed into the incisions

    Grafts are placed into the incisions

    Follicular unit grafts are gently placed into the recipient incisions.

    Grafts are placed in varying densities

    Grafts are placed in varying densities

    Typically the smallest one and two hair grafts are placed in the very front of the hairline, with three and four hair grafts placed behind them.

    Patient immediately following surgery

    Patient immediately following surgery

    Following surgery a patient will have hundreds of tiny incisions with short hair stubble showing from the new grafts.

    Close up of recipient area after surgery

    Close up of recipient area after surgery

    The tiny graft incisions heal rapidly. The redness and scabbing in the recipient area normally clears up within about one week.

  • How to Choose a Hair Restoration Clinic

    Male hair loss

    The most important decision in restoring your hair is the physician you choose. The skill, talent, and experience of hair restoration physicians vary widely, as do the end results. Who you choose will determine how natural and full your new hair will be for the rest of your life.

    Since performing follicular unit hair transplantation is very demanding upon a clinic’s physician and staff only a minority of hair restoration clinics perform it successfully. Unfortunately, many clinics are still unwilling or unable to dedicate the time and resources required to master and perform this procedure successfully.

    Therefore, those seeking only the most natural results need to be very selective. Keep in mind that in the United States any licensed physician can perform hair restoration surgery without any special certification or training. If you do not find an excellent hair restoration surgeon in your local area seriously consider traveling out of state to get your hair restored properly. After all, the results will last a lifetime.

    Evaluating a potential hair restoration physician and clinic

    • How many years has the physician been dedicated to doing hair restoration?

    • How many hair restoration procedures does the surgeon perform in one day? Ideally the physician will be dedicated to working on you all day if you are doing a large mega session procedure.

    • Does the physician perform hair restoration surgery full time or predominantly? If not, the clinic may not have a staff that is experienced enough to successfully perform large sessions of all microscopically prepared Follicular Unit (FU) grafts.

    • What is the hair restoration surgeon's reputation among his or her peers?

    • Does the physician take a holistic approach to hair loss treatment and also offer advice or Rogaine?

    • What procedure does the clinic perform? Is it truly state of the art?

    • Does the physician use microscopes for the dissection of the donor tissue into 1, 2, 3, and 4 hair Follicular Unit (FU) grafts?

    • Large sessions of all microscopically prepared grafts are a team effort. But how "hands on" will your hair restoration surgeon be? Will he or she be making all the incisions in the graft recipient area, thus determining the design and hair direction of your transplanted hair? How involved will your surgeon be in the placing of the actual grafts?

    • Trust but Verify – Review Patient Results

    • Can the surgeon provide a list of names and phone numbers of patients willing to discuss their personal experiences? Patient testimonials will say a lot.

    • Can the surgeon provide at least one dozen sets of clinical "before" and "after" case photos for your review? Be sure the photos offer good clarity and detail and include "before" views as well as "after" views that allow for critical evaluation.

    • Verify claims by visiting online discussion forums and searching for previous posts regarding a hair transplant physician you are considering.

    Consider our Quality Physicians

    hair transplant doctors

    Our member physicians are carefully reviewed and granted membership in the Coalition based on their high level of ethics, skill, and the quality of their patient results.

    Learn more about our network of quality prescreened physicians.

  • Hair Transplant Cost

    Hair Transplant Cost

    Today hair transplant costs are vastly better value, than they did just a few years ago. Increased competition combined with the increased ability of a specialized clinic to produce large sessions of follicular units at reduced hair transplant costs and has resulted in patients getting vastly better results and increased density at lower prices.

    Just a few years ago it was not unusual for a clinic to charge as much as $15 US per graft, while providing patients with only small sessions of a few hundred grafts that achieved limited density and fullness.

    Today hair restoration clinics typically provide free no obligation consultations, with surgical sessions priced either per graft or by the session. Hair transplant costs typically cost between $3.00 to $8.00 per graft, with $5 to $6 per graft being about average.

    It is normal for the price per graft to drop as the size of the surgical session increases. Many clinics will offer a reduced rate per graft once a certain surgical session size (i.e. 1,000 or 2,000 grafts) is exceeded.

    Comparing the costs of various hair loss treatments

    Price options

    Although hair transplant surgery is not inexpensive, it can be the best hair restoration value given that the results are natural and last a life time. The cost of non surgical solutions like a hair system or hair loss medications can exceed the cost of hair restoration surgery when the long term costs are compared.

    For example – A quality custom hair replacement system on average costs $1,200 and needs to be replaced about once a year. In addition, a hair replacement system requires regular upkeep and reattachment each every 5 to 6 weeks at about $75 per visit or $675 per year.

    Hair Piece, or Surgery


    Thus the cost of buying and maintaining quality hair replacement systems over 15 years is approximately $28,125.00 ($1,200 plus $675 in annual upkeep = $1,875 x 15 years = $28,125.00). This total cost well exceeds the typical cost of surgical hair restoration.

    Note - Of course the cheapest option is shaving your head with an actual net saving due to no expense for shampoos, conditioners, combs, brushes, or hair stylist.

    Consult a physician for an estimate

    Our member physicians price their procedures independently. So your final cost will depend on who you select and how much hair restoration you will need to be satisfied.

    To do a free consult with one of our quality member physicians to get an estimated cost of restoring your hair visit our member physicians’ area.

  • Surgical Hair Restoration - View our procedures in detail

    Surgical Hair Restoration

    Our physician members perform a very refined hair transplant procedure called "Follicular Unit Hair Transplantation". Today there are two methods for doing this procedure. They differ only in the methods used to harvest and prepare the grafts.

    Follicular Unit Extraction Video is provided courtesy of Dr. Alan Bauman.



    How the follicular unit extraction (FUE) hair transplant procedure is different than standard strip excision hair transplant surgery.



    How the minimally invasive hair transplant procedure known as Follicular Unit Extraction or FUE is performed.



    How follicular unit grafts are created under microscopic dissection and then placed into tiny incisions in the balding areas.