Sapphire FUE vs. Classic FUE: Which Is Best?
Sapphire fue: Innovation within the hair transplant industry is growing every day. Since it’s first mention back in 1939, new ideas and technologies have paved the way for increasingly effective treatment.
One of the most prominent examples in recent years has been the development of sapphire FUE. A take on the already popular follicular unit extraction (FUE) method, the sapphire FUE technique focuses on the channel opening stage of the treatment, through the use of specialist sapphire — rather than steel — blades.
But, how does this work exactly, how does it compare to classic FUE, and what benefits can it bring? Below, we’ve looked into this in more detail, outlining both methods, as well as examining some of the standout advantages of sapphire FUE.
A Quick Recap: What Is FUE and How Does It Work?
Follicular unit extraction (FUE) is the most popular and widely-used hair transplantation method. Simply put, the technique involves the extraction and transplantation of individual follicular units, which contain around 1-4 hairs, from one part of the body to another. Most commonly, this means extracting hair follicles from the back or sides of the head — where there’s still good density — and transplanting them to the balding area on the top of the head.
Follicular units that are taken from the back or sides of the head, known as the donor area, are thought to be resistant to a hormone called dihydrotestosterone (DHT) — believed to be responsible for causing hair loss. Once transplanted to the top of the head, also known as the recipient area, these hair follicles retain their resistance to DHT, preventing them from falling out in the future. It’s for this reason, that hair transplantation surgery is considered to be a long-lasting procedure, however, longevity can vary from patient to patient depending on individual circumstances.
A key stage of the procedure is the creation of what are known as channels. Essentially, these are small incisions that are made in the recipient area in which the extracted follicular units are then implanted into. These channels help to determine the angle, direction, and density of the new hair growth following treatment. Follicular units are inserted into them individually to create the most natural-looking results.
What Is Sapphire FUE?
Despite its high levels of success, the classic FUE method is constantly developing around new innovative ideas and technologies. In recent years, it took a step forward with the introduction of what’s become known as sapphire FUE. This is not a completely new technique however, rather, it’s a development of the existing FUE method.
A sapphire hair transplant is carried out in much the same way as an ordinary FUE transplant. The difference between the two comes down to the blade that’s used during the channel creation stage. While the classic FUE method uses steel blades for this process, the sapphire FUE technique, as the name suggests, is carried out using sapphire blades. Made from precious gemstone, sapphire blades are known for their sharpness, smoothness, and durability. It’s these properties that allow the surgeon to create what are known as micro-channels — essentially smaller, more accurate incisions in the recipient area.
This is important as the creation of channels is the most important stage of a hair transplantation surgery. As mentioned, the nature of these created channels is what plays a role in determining the density, angle, and direction of the new hair growth following the procedure. Having the ability to create smaller and more precise channels using a sapphire blade can produce more natural-looking results than are possible to achieve with a conventional steel blade.