Male hair loss due to androgenetic alopecia follows a typical pattern and the first signs are a receding hairline and thinning on the top or vertex of the head, known as the crown. In more advanced stages of hair loss, the receding hairline may connect with balding at the crown, creating a horseshoe-shaped ring of hair on the side and back of the scalp.
While Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) has proven effective in addressing receding hairlines and balding at the front of the scalp, questions linger about its efficacy on the challenging terrain of the crown.
FUE, a minimally invasive hair restoration technique, involves harvesting individual hair follicles from the donor area (typically at the back of the scalp) and transplanting them to the recipient area. The process is meticulous, requiring precision to ensure natural-looking results. As the crown presents its own set of challenges, it’s essential to assess whether FUE is up to the task.
Challenges of crown restoration
The crown, or vertex, poses unique challenges for hair transplantation. Its circular pattern and the whorl of hair growth make it crucial to maintain a natural aesthetic. Additionally, the crown often experiences thinning and may have a limited donor hair supply. These factors raise the question: Can FUE effectively tackle these challenges and deliver satisfactory results on the crown?
Efficacy of FUE on the crown
Precise and natural results: FUE’s precision makes it suitable for addressing the intricacies of the crown. The ability to harvest individual follicles allows for careful consideration of the hair’s angle, direction, and density, resulting in a more natural appearance.
Limited donor supply: While the donor supply at the back of the scalp is more limited than other areas, advancements in FUE technology and surgical techniques have expanded the possibilities. Surgeons can strategically extract grafts, ensuring the preservation of the donor area’s aesthetic and preventing overharvesting.
Whorl patterns: The whorl patterns in the crown require a surgeon’s skill to mimic natural hair growth. FUE, with its precision in graft placement, allows for the recreation of these patterns, enhancing the overall aesthetic of the transplanted hair.
Choosing a skilled and experienced surgeon is paramount. A surgeon’s ability to design a natural hairline, navigate the whorl patterns, and optimise donor hair distribution greatly influences the success of the procedure.
Mr Michael Mouzakis is a highly experienced hair restoration surgeon, offers the most advanced techniques, has performed over 1,600 procedures, and was awarded finalist of the Hair Restoration Practitioner of the Year category in the Aesthetic Medicine Awards 2022.
Realistic expectations are also crucial. While FUE can significantly improve the appearance of the crown, achieving a perfect match with the original density may be challenging. Patients should understand that multiple sessions may be necessary for optimal results. Age is also a factor and younger patients may need to wait until the hair loss pattern is more established before transplanting the crown.