What’s the Donor Area?
Before we can explain the donor area, we must first understand grafts. A graft is a group of hair follicles, which may consist of one or more follicles. All grafts are gathered from the donor area.
Usually, the donor area is located at the back of the head, but can also be located in other areas of the body. If the donor area is in the back of the head, approximately up to 5,000 follicular units of hair can be extracted. This may seem like far too many; however, usually, this area is home to about 12,000 to 20,000 follicles.
Most unusual donor areas:
Any area except for the scalp will be a challenge as a donor area. The look and texture of hair from other parts of the body can easily stand out when transplanted on the scalp. There’s usually not enough hair in these areas to be used. Also, the tools used for an FUE procedure are not made specifically for body hair. Most body hair grows at an angle, which would pose a challenge to the tools used in FUE procedures. Though in desperate measures to fill bald spots and to increase density, some doctors have been successful at transplanting body hair to the scalp.
Though it seems unusual, chest, leg, and pubic hair have all been and can be used as a donor area for a hair transplant. Hairs from these areas are very different from the hair on the scalp. Though the hairs may attempt to take on the look of the hair on the scalp, their wiry look and texture doesn’t always fit in. These hairs are best used as filler, where it can blend in with native strands.
Does the donor area grow back?
This question can be a bit tricky, and the answer is case by case. Patients should expect to be healing from an FUE for up to two weeks. Usually, after the procedure and healing process of the donor area, patients will notice a regrowth of the donor area. While this is ideal in most cases, not all follicles will regrow. This is partially the reason why the surgeon who’s doing the procedure should thoroughly plan and walk each patient through the entire process. Most times, even if hair doesn’t regrow, with proper strategic planning, it’s hardly noticeable.
Can you use someone else’s hair?
Immune systems are built to protect the body from different bacterias and illnesses. If someone was to donate their hair follicles to a patient in hopes of transplanting them, there’s a very high chance the body would reject the hair. In these cases, the recipient could become very ill. The only possibility is that the donor is an identical twin of the recipient, and even then, there could be complications.
If you have any questions or concerns about your donor area, please contact us. With a consultation, Dr. Varona will be able to see what you’ll need to restore your hair successfully.