Alopecia and techniques in hair restoration: an overview for the cosmetic surgeon

Oral Maxillofac Surg. 2019 Jun;23(2):123-131. doi: 10.1007/s10006-019-00750-9. Epub 2019 Feb 21.


Purpose: Alopecia is a debilitating disorder affecting millions of individuals worldwide. Although challenging to treat, advances in hair restoration technologies have led to multiple viable options with excellent clinical results. This paper seeks to provide an overview of hair loss and the currently utilized techniques in hair transplantation in order to serve as a reference source for the facial plastic surgeon.

Methods: A comprehensive review of recent literature regarding the evaluation of, and management modalities for, alopecia was performed.

Results: The follicular unit extraction technique and the strip harvest technique are both widely used for patients desiring transplantation. While both techniques can lead to successful outcomes, each has pros and cons that are important to understand prior to engaging in the procedure.

Conclusion: Advancements in hair restoration technologies implementing robotics, manual, or motorized follicular unit extraction have facilitated optimization of outcomes. Adjuvant treatment modalities including robotics and platelet-rich plasma injections have shown utility in augmenting transplantation.

Keywords: Alopecia; Follicular unit extraction; Hair transplant; Strip technique.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alopecia
  • Hair
  • Hair Follicle
  • Humans
  • Platelet-Rich Plasma*
  • Surgeons*