Effects of cooling micrografts in hair transplantation surgery

Dermatol Surg. 1999 Sep;25(9):705-7. doi: 10.1046/j.1524-4725.1999.98287.x.


Background: When isolating hair grafts in hair transplantation procedures, it is generally recommended to preserve the grafts at a low temperature (1 degrees C- 4 degrees C) in order to enhance the survival rate of the grafted hairs. This study was carried out to test the real benefits provided by cold-storing hair grafts.

Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate, in an in vitro model, the effects of cooling micrografts during hair transplantation procedures to experimentally assess the soundness of this approach to enhance the survival and growth rates of hair micrografts.

Methods: A total of 240 anagen hair follicles were obtained from 10 healthy male patients. Follicles were thus randomly assigned to one of the following groups: group A (control; n = 120 follicles), or group B (experimental; n = 120 follicles). Follicles from group A were preserved for 5 hours at room temperature (26 degrees C), and follicles from group B were preserved for 5 hours at 1 degrees C. Immediately after that 5-hour period, follicles from both groups were then cultured for 10 days. The length of each follicle was measured immediately following the 5-hour test period and at the end of the 10-day culture period.

Results: No statistically significant differences were found between the survival and growth rates of follicles from the control (survival rate = 87%, mean 10-day growth rate = 2.68 mm) and experimental (survival rate = 88%, mean 10-day growth rate = 2.54 mm) groups.

Conclusion: Although, at present, it is generally assumed that lowering the metabolism of grafts by reducing their temperature may be of some utility for enhancing their survival rate, our data indicate of that there are no effects when performing hair transplantation surgery.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cold Temperature*
  • Hair Follicle / transplantation*
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Male
  • Tissue Preservation*
  • Tissue Survival