I was curious if you know if any doctors track the survivability of the grafts? I know that there is quite a bit of information on transection rates for different surgeons but was wondering if anyone monitors this metric? If they do – how might the survivability be determined outside of just counting the grafts in the recipient area a few weeks/months after the surgery? Thanks
This is a great question. We track transection rates when we perform FUE surgeries. The transection can vary from 5% to 50%. I believe 5 to 10% is an acceptable number. If there is a high transection rate then we will abort or never recommend surgery. This is the reason why at NHI we always pre-test all potential FUE patients, but I realize other clinics and doctors may not do this.
The data for other clinics and doctors is not available or well published in studies. I believe mainly it is directly linked to business. No one would publish poor results or high transection rates, as it is not good for business. As unfortunate as it may be, the consumers and patients are left to do their own due diligence and trust their doctor, probably by contacting patients who had it done by that doctor. One way around this would be for patients to ask about seeing actual patients in person or seeing their own surgical records of how the grafts were tracked (if it is done at all). In theory, the transection rate should be documented on the day of surgery, but I realize not all doctors will keep this record (as it is not mandatory) and some may refuse to show it to their patients. I can say this because I have heard these issues come up in consultations with some patients that have had procedures done elsewhere previously.
I know of one doctor who promotes and reports 96% good FUE grafts (4% or less transection), yet I have see many of his patients and found a high degree of failures in those of his patients who came to me for a second opinion. This is a buyer beware business. Sometimes you can expose poor practices through reports by the chamber of commerce or the courts in the areas where the doctors practice. I’ve also been asked to post the names of doctors to be weary of, but if I were to speak up and identify those who may not be honest in their representation, I would become a target for slander. I have better things to do than take up residence in the court system.