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FUE Hair Transplants - First Learn The Craft

FUE hair transplant surgery is arguably the most nuanced and difficult discipline of cosmetic surgery to perform well on a consistent basis, however, many product manufacturers, untrained cosmetic surgeons and hair transplant marketers will have you think that surgical hair restoration is a simple “one size fits” all nothing procedure. Bottom line: no matter what piece of equipment a physician or clinic purchases, all devices are 100% user dependent and can be extremely dangerous if not used by a physician and staff who has proper training and "time on tissue.”

Spencer Kobren: Well let's think about it. I mean they are ... all the manufacturers are sponsoring their conference. They need to keep the conference on.

Ken Anderson, MD: True.

Spencer Kobren: And I'm out there saying, listen, if you're going to start this, you don't have to spend $100,000 on a device. Start slow. And then if you want to work your way up you can. But learn your craft. You can buy, spend a few dollars on a punch or you can buy a smaller motorized device. And you can learn how to do it well. And then if you think that there's a marketing advantage to buying one of these bigger devices, then you can go that route. That's probably not the best way to start.

Ken Anderson, MD: That's an excellent point. You know I took the ... that was a question today on the exam.

Spencer Kobren: Interesting.

Ken Anderson, MD: Yeah. I took it.

Spencer Kobren: What was the question?

Ken Anderson, MD: I took the Hair Restoration Surgery Board Exam today. And one of the multiple choice questions was about which of the following about Follicular Unit Excision is true. And there were a couple of outrageous statements, but the one that was actually true that I picked was, they had a couple of questions about motorized devices, but they said manual FUE with a non-motorized punch is a great place for a beginning FUE surgeon to start.

Ken Anderson, MD: And that's true. But I know dozens of my colleagues in my specialty of facial plastic surgery that fit into the other category where they're busy doing their facelifts and other plastic surgeries. And then a device appears on their page and they're all over RealSelf with stock videos from the corporation. To those of us who do it for a living, it's almost a little bit cringe worthy.

Spencer Kobren: I have love hate relationship with RealSelf. I was talking about this at this meeting today. And I was showing them the applications that I had which were six today, which I'll show you as well to the IHRS. And I said I could just essentially open up a RealSelf of hair transplants. Everyone wants in. They're willing to pay top dollar. And I've chosen not to. But I admire Tom [Siri 00:02:12] for not giving a shit and just doing his own thing and realizing, okay, these doctors want in. I'm going to consider this to be a business. And that's it.

Spencer Kobren: The problem that I see for real hair transplant surgeons is while you're going to get leads, there's not doubt about it, you're going to get a lot of tire kickers for sure. And you're also putting yourself in a category where I believe you're diminishing your value as a real hair transplant surgeon, because you are jockeying for position with other guys who essentially just have bought a machine. Everyone who goes to RealSelf, they may look at your before and afters, they may see all of your reviews if you have more reviews. That's great, but they're still looking for price. And they're still looking at every doctor as the same. It's one size fits all.

Find A Surgeon

The International Alliance of Hair Restoration Surgeons is a consumer organization that selectively screens skilled and ethical hair transplant surgeons. The IAHRS does not offer an open membership policy to doctors practicing hair transplatation, and is the only group that recognizes that all surgeons are not equal in their skill and technique. Its elite membership seeks to represent the best in the discipline, the true leaders in the field of surgical hair restoration.