Dr. Oz says he's changed his mind about hair transplants after seeing a procedure called follicular unit transplantation performed by his Columbia University colleague Dr. Bob Bernstein.
First, Dr. Bernstein determines if the patient is a good candidate for the procedure. If he is eligible, the first step is to use a local anesthetic to numb his scalp. Then, Dr. Bernstein removes a thin strip of hair from the back of the patient's head and sews the incision shut. The scar will be covered by hair from above.
Using powerful microscopes, Dr. Bernstein and his team then carefully slice up this strip of scalp into thousands of skin grafts called follicular units. Each follicular unit contains one to three hairs. Then, in a meticulous process that can take as long as eight hours, thousands of microincisions are made with a very fine needle in the bald scalp, and the individual follicles are implanted.
"After the procedure, the hair is shed," Dr. Bernstein says. "Then, [the implanted follicle] starts at about three months to grow a new hair, and it's permanent."