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Artificial Hair Implants for Pattern Hair Loss and Scarring Alopecia

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A short paper published in the Dermatologic Therapy journal on 6th June 2019 outlines the outcome from using Biofibre® artificial hair implants on men and women with hair loss.

This method, which has been in development for over ten years, implants synthetic hairs during a hair transplant operation, and, the company stresses, must be carried out by a specifically trained professional, not least because it involves using new, proprietary MediCap equipment.

The key conditions this was used to address were Male Pattern Baldness, Female Pattern Hair Loss and scarring alopecia, also known as Cicatricial Alopecia.

Hair transplant surgery

During normal hair transplant operations, donor hair is required. This is the term for follicles harvested from areas of the patient’s scalp which are unaffected by their specific hair loss condition. These follicles are then implanted into incisions in the sparser areas they want to fill out.

For example, in the case of Female or Male Pattern Baldness, which affects the follicles along the top of the head, from hairline and temples to crown, only, ‘donor hair’ is taken from the sides and/or back of the head.

Where there is not enough good quality donor hair available, hair restoration surgery may not be possible; this tends to be the case where the patient has extensive follicular damage, either through advanced baldness, where the scalp has taken on a smooth, shiny appearance, or due to scarring.

This is one of the reasons why hair transplants for Cicatricial Alopecia patients, who have often lost their hair to scarring caused by burns or injury, are decided on a case-by-case basis by specialist surgeons, rather than there being a general rule about it being a suitable procedure for those with this condition.

Biofibre® hair implantation system

Biofibre® hair implantation system negates the need for donor hair as it uses artificial hair, which the peer-reviewed, published report describes as having “special physical, chemical and mechanical features”.

According to Biofibre marketing literature, the out-patient procedure requires no down-time and can be done at a rate of 800 hairs implanted per hour, in order to provide a ‘high hair density’ result. The average number per procedure is 2,500 synthetic strands. Continues below…

They offer 14 different hair colours, and strands of different lengths that mimic all hair types and textures, plus further claim that it is a painless and reversible op. Also, as the hair is not real, it will not age or go grey.

There are, however, a number of downsides to this promising-sounding surgery. Additional ‘touch-up’ surgeries may be needed in order to maintain the initial look, and patients will need to follow scalp- and hair-aftercare both to properly preserve their results and for hygiene reasons.

The artificial hairs are believed to last around 7 to 8 years, and shed at a rate of approximately 10 per cent per year.

The Biofibre® hair implantation system is not suitable for everyone; the company website states that patients who are sensitive to “the pre-implant test or suffering from scalp diseases or overall illness, such as diabetes, lupus, HIV, hepatitis, autoimmune diseases, etc.” will find the system “cannot be be used in all scalp area with same degree of performance”.

Potential hair loss solution for some candidates

If a hair transplant candidate no longer needs to have sufficient – or, indeed, any – donor hair, it widens the scope of those who may be suitable for this type of surgery.

Biofibre Hair Implants System hair transplant synthetic hair

There are already clinically-proven, MHRA-licensed and FDA-approved hair loss treatments available for Male and Female Pattern Baldness, which can be used so long as the follicles are still functioning – even if they only produce thinning hair – and the individuals are deemed medically-suitable.

In cases of true baldness – which is rarely seen in women with genetic hairloss, but common in men – and Cicatricial Alopecia, there are currently no widely accepted remedies, other than cosmetic solutions, such as wigs.

Therefore, should this innovation prove viable, this may provide men and women who may currently have no real options for getting their hair back, with a way to have a full head of hair again. This is, of course, as long as the procedure and materials are proven to be both safe and effective for long-term use.

Furthermore, whereas with a regular FUE or FUT hair restoration operation it can take around 12 months to see the full results of the procedure, the results from Biofibre® hair implantation, using a novel CE 0373 certified medical device, are said to be instant – something that will no doubt appeal to clients who want on-demand, ‘quick-fix’ hair loss solutions.

An international team* studied how the synthetic hair implants performed on 1,518 patients – a mix of men and women – with varying degrees of baldness from genetic hair loss or burns and scars.

Their findings state: “According to our experience, this technique gives immediate and visible results without scarring or hospitalization and the aesthetic results are very encouraging for both male and female patients with a rapid recovery of self‐esteem and psychological well‐being.”

We look forward to seeing wider-ranging trials involving this innovative system, which does not yet have FDA-clearance but has been authorised by its Australian equivalent body, and will report on any updates here on the Belgravia blog.

*The researchers came from the Department of Dermatology at the University of Parma, the Clinic of Dermatology in Ferrara, and the Department of Dermatology at Rome’s University G. Marconi, all in Italy, the Department of Dermatology at University Cluj‐Napoca in Romania, the Department of Dermatology at Fortis Hospital, Shalimar Bagh, India, the University of Cairo’s Department of Dermatology in Egypt, and both the Department of General, Vascular and Abdominal Surgery, and the Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Dermatologic surgery, at the Medical Institute of Ministry of Interior in Sofia, Bulgaria.

Circ - Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Clinics LondonThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

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