Improved hair restoration method for burns
Background: Extracted partial longitudinal follicular units can be used as complete follicular units to regenerate completely differentiated hair growth. The partial follicular units that remained in the dermis in the donor area can survive and produce hairs. This technique enables us to multiply hair follicles in vivo, while preserving the donor area and therefore is suitable in persons, who have a relative small donor area compared to the recipient area, as in scalp burns. Objectives: With this study, we try to determine if partial longitudinal follicular unit transplantation (PL-FUT) can be used for facial and/or scalp burns. Materials and methods: Four burn victims (age 22-39 years, mean 27.75 years) were treated in the face (eyebrows, and beard) and/or on the scalp with PL-FUT. The grafts were harvested with hollow wave-tipped needles with an inner diameter of 0.6 mm from the occipital area of the scalp. The suitable longitudinal partial follicular units were impregnated with a preservative medium, and implanted into the recipient area. Hair growth in the donor area as well as the recipient area was observed before treatment, and at intervals of 1 week, 3 months and 1 year after the treatment. Results: After evaluation of the donor area, sometimes a few little white spots were visible, but almost all hair follicles in the donor site re-produce hairs after 2 years. All treated patients had satisfactory or very satisfactory cosmetic results in the treated area. Conclusions: Longitudinal partial follicular unit transplantation (LP-FUT) may represent the first reliable patient-friendly method to generate two hair follicles from one hair follicle with consistent results and preservation of the donor area. Therefore, this method is very suitable for people with facial and/or scalp burns.