Robot Assisted Hair Transplants vs. Traditional Hair Transplants
As technology advances it brings with it new and exciting ways to perform tasks that have been done the same way for decades.
It wasn’t that long ago that cell phones weren’t in everyone’s pockets, or that you could start your car from inside when it’s snowy or cold. And while many people growing up in the world today will never know the struggles that some of us faced as we grew up, technology is constantly improving our way of lives in ways we could have never imagined.
And with the introduction of robot assisted hair transplants, the process of rejuvenating your hair has become more technologically advanced than ever before, and with better precision that we could have imagined even 20 years ago.
How is a Hair Transplant Performed?
To give you a brief idea of how a transplant is performed, it is essentially removing hair follicles from one area of your scalp and placing them in another. The goal is to remove just enough healthy hair follicles from an area on your scalp that is still thriving, and places those follicles in an area that has started to thin out. By doing so, we can help you regain the look of fullness in your hair that you had when you were younger.
Most men begin to experience male pattern baldness in their 30’s or 40’s, but it can occur in your teens or in your later years. It all depends on genetics. With the advances in hair restoration technology, no longer do you have to go through the rest of your life worrying about losing your hair. And now, with the introduction of robot assisted transplants, the precision in which these procedures can be performed is elevated to new levels.
We know there are people out there that may not trust a robot to do a surgery, but with hair transplants rest assured, the doctor is always in control of what the robot is doing. It is not taking the physician expertise away from the procedure, it’s merely adding to it.
It’s another tool for the doctor to use to help ensure that your best grafts are identified and that your donor area is properly protected from over harvesting. In the end it helps ensure that you are as happy as you can be with the results. The ARTAS robot requires a skilled professional to operate, so it should NOT be used as a way for non-hair transplant specialists to suddenly become “experts.”
So if ARTAS robot assisted transplants still require a skilled hair transplant specialist at the helm, then what are the benefits of using the robot vs. going with the traditional transplant methods?
Robot Assisted Hair Transplants vs. Traditional Hair Transplants – What’s the Difference?
When people hear the word “robot” it’s a normal reaction to think that this machine is going to replace a human in doing a job, but that’s not the case when it comes to robot assisted hair transplants.
The robot is there to assist the doctor and not to perform the entire procedure on its own. The doctor will still control all of the movements performed by the robot and will be fully in charge of what the robot does or doesn’t do. The robot runs complicated algorithms at lightning speed that measures the angle that your hairs are exiting the skin. This calculation helps determine the exact angle of entry for the needle to excise the graft. It also is able to calculate your hair density and determine which grafts are single hairs and which are made up of multiple hairs MUCH faster than the human eye and brain could tabulate.
In the case of the ARTAS Robotic Hair Transplant System, which is what we use here at Limmer Hair Transplant Center, the robot can pinpoint exactly which grafts on the scalp are best to excise the follicular units (FUE grafts), however, it depends on the physicians to direct the robot to harvest grafts at a specific interval. Meaning, based on your density, the size of the follicular units and the number of grafts to be harvested, the physician will set the protected area around each graft that is harvested so that they resulting wounds are not too close together and potentially leave visible scars.
In a traditional FUE hair transplant procedure, the doctor manual excises the follicular units from the patients scalp which leaves room for human error as well as fatigue. Depending on how many grafts need to be placed, the repetitiveness can get tiring for even the most skilled doctors. In fact, after years of the repetitive motion of FUE harvesting, many physicians suffer from overuse injuries of the hand, wrist, elbow, or shoulder. The robot assistance helps alleviate that fatigue and helps ensure that each excision is as precise as the next… since robots don’t get tired.
That’s the main difference between robot assisted hair transplants and a traditional hair transplant procedure. The rest of the process is the same once the robot has excised the follicular units.
A technician collects the grafts and inspects them to ensure they are of the highest quality, separates the FUs into groups of 1, 2, and 3 haired grafts and prepares them for implantation. Once the grafts have been determined to be suitable for transplant they are ready for placement into the thinning area of the scalp.
By utilizing the robot, ARTAS in this case, to help excise the follicular units, we can ensure that everything is done with extreme precision and no fatigue. It helps the doctor focus on choosing the best grafts from the best donor area. And in a procedure that can last several hours, it’s important to ensure that consistency is maintained throughout so that the results are what the patient expects.