You might have heard about “stem cell hair transplants,” and wondered if such a thing could even be possible. You’re not alone in questioning if it’s real and if it works. Let’s dive in to what a stem cell hair transplant is and why it could potentially be better than any other hair transplant out there.
Hair transplants are procedures to help with male or female patterned baldness by taking some of the healthy growing hair on your scalp and spreading it around on the balding areas. There are currently two main types of hair transplants, FUT and FUE. Let’s dive in to what each of them are.
In a FUT (short for Follicular Unit Transplantation,) a surgeon will cut off a strip of skin from your scalp, usually from the back. Hair follicles from the strip of skin are extracted and injected back into the scalp in balding areas. FUT usually takes 4-8 hours to complete. The skin the surgeon cuts out is usually 1- 1/2 centimeters long or smaller, and it typically leaves a scar.
In a FUE (short for Follicular Unit Extraction,) the surgeon removes individual hair follicles to transplant rather than a strip of skin. By taking individual follicles the surgeon will cover up any thinning sections of your scalp or bald parts. This process takes longer than a FUT, but it doesn’t leave a scar.
There are many pros and cons to both of these main hair transplant methods. They are both considered safe and effective. The transplanted hair starts growing in 2-3 months. They are relatively risk free and can be a great option for people struggling with male or female patterned baldness.
However, something that neither FUT or FUE does is give you more hair. Hair transplants take your existing hair and spread it out to cover up bad spots. Hair transplants don’t actually increase the number of follicles on your head or make your hair thicker. What if there was a way to do just that?
Scientist have been toying with the idea for a while now, what if they could actually increase someone’s hair follicles? What if they could multiply the hair on a person’s head? What if they could give a full head of hair to someone completely bald? The answer is stem cell hair transplants.
What is a stem cell hair transplant
A “stem cell hair transplant” is a process that is currently being researched and studied. The idea behind it is that instead of taking some skin from the scalp, like an FUT, or taking individual hair follicles and transplanting them on a person’s head, like a FUE, the surgeon would take stem cells from a hair follicle where it would be cloned or multiplied in a lab.
Then the cloned hair follicles would be inserted into the scalp, where they would continue to grow like normal. It may sound like something from a sci-fi movie, but just imagine the potential that hair growth could have if any time anyone started to go bald or lose their hair scientists could just clone more for them. It would be pretty neat.
Would be, that is, because it isn’t happening just yet. Stem cell hair transplants are still in the research phase, still being developed. But, improvements in its development are being found, and hopefully one day soon we will have the stem cell hair transplant process available.
You may have heard of stem cell hair transplants before under the name “hair cloning.” Both names mean the same thing and are used interchangeably. To not confuse stem cell hair transplants with other transplants it might be easier to call them hair cloning. If you would like to learn more about hair cloning, click here.
How do stem cell hair transplants work?
The idea behind stem cell hair transplants (A.K.A hair cloning) is that the scientists would use stem cells in your scalp to multiply and clone more follicles.
Stem cells are cells in the body that have the ability to develop into other types of cells. They can develop into bone cells, hair cells, blood cells, and more. Because of this scientists are trying to replicate that process in order to clone and make lab grown human hair.
There is a lot of controversy surrounding using stem cells for medical treatments, and there are a lot of questions about potential side effects that such a process could cause. That is most of what the research on stem cells is trying to answer.
When will stem hair transplants become available?
Great question! We don’t really have that great of an answer because the truth is, we don’t know. Stem cell hair transplants are still in the “research” stages. As far as we know there isn’t a company out there that has even started human trials yet.
There are rumors that late 2022 and early 2023 will see a lot of action in the hair cloning department, but it could be longer than that. A research company would need multiple successful human trials, an approval from the FDA, and a market for them. That might take a while.
(There are some fake procedures out there claiming all the benefits of a stem cell hair transplant, but hair cloning is still “in the works,” so be wary of claims that sound too good to be true.)
We can’t answer questions such as which company will bring their stem cell hair transplant procedure to market first or what needs to be in place for the FDA to approve it. We can however say that new developments in the research are happening all the time and the future of stem cell hair transplants looks bright.
What can you do?
You might have read this far and now are thinking, “Okay… So, what?” With stem cell hair transplants being available to the general public possibly years away, what can you do now for your balding hair?
If you’ve liked what you’ve read about hair cloning so far, and think that may be a good option for you when it becomes available, you can keep up with the different companies doing the research and any news that may come out.
The procedure will probably be expensive so you can also start saving up for it when it does become available.
Next, you can check out the resources at Thinningtothickness.com. From free hair consultations, to amazing products, and informational blog articles, we have lots of things to help you get thick, strong, and healthy hair.