Regarding the articles you posted recently about FUE versus strip procedures, I was wondering why FUE 2 isn’t the gold standard for transplant surgery. If the graft yield is just as good as strip from FUE 2, doesn’t that mean It has all the advantages of FUE and none of the drawbacks?
There is a series of reasons as to why FUE2 isn’t the gold standard, and I’ll list and expand upon that to address why the traditional FUE also isn’t the gold standard:
1- FUE2 is not available at this time for commercial use. We have not proven that the FUE2 can be as effective in 100 consecutive patients with comparable results, as we have shown in the two examples we demonstrated here. When we get it manufactured, it will have to compete with all of the other FUE drills out there, including the ARTAS robot. There will be a general reluctance for those doctors who feel comfortable with what they are presently doing, to switch to the FUE2.
2- I’ve discussed in great detail the limitations of traditional FUE in the hands of many surgeons (see part 1, part 2). Doctors may want to believe that FUE is better than strip surgery, something that I presently doubt with traditional FUE mechanical solutions. The strip harvesting produces the best quality grafts in most surgeons’ hands. I am certain there are many doctors who claim FUE expertise, that are not being honest with their patients. I know this because I often see the failures of FUE from known surgeons who claim expertise in this technique.
3- It is not generally agreed by many knowledgeable surgeons that the donor area can supply as many total grafts as strip surgery. In strip surgery, the surgeon always takes out the strip in the “sweet area”, which means its best concentration of quality grafts. This area can be harvested over and over again with only the risk of scarring. FUE, on the other hand, may produce irreparable damage to the donor area as the number of harvested grafts increase. In recent presentations given at physician meetings, there are suggestions that the donor area does get damaged as more and more grafts are excised with FUE.