History of Hair Transplantation by San Diego Hair RestorationHome / / History of Hair Transplantation by San Diego Hair Restoration
The roots of modern day were cultivated in Japan in the late 1930s. In 1939, Japanese dermatologist Dr. Okuda detailed his groundbreaking work in surgical hair restoration for burn victims. He described using a punch technique to extract round sections of hair-bearing skin, which were then implanted into slightly smaller round holes made in the scarred or burned areas of the scalps of his patients. After the skin grafts healed, they continued to produce hair in the previously bald areas of scalp. In 1943 another Japanese dermatologist refined Okuda's technique by using significantly smaller grafts of one to three hairs to replace lost pubic hair in his female patients.
In 1952, Dr. Norman Orentreich, a New York dermatologist, performed the first known hair transplant in the U.S. on a man suffering from male pattern balding. Orentreich essentially reinvented modern-day hair transplantation.
Seven years later, after much criticism, Orentreich published his findings and set forth his theory of "donor dominance" in the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. His work demonstrated that the hair from the back and the sides of a man's scalp was for the most part resistant to the balding process. However, his technique mirrored the less aesthetically "punch graft" process of Okuda instead of the more natural, smaller grafting technique of Tamura.
It wasn't until the mid 1990s that surgical hair restoration produced natural-looking results. Newer techniques, such as follicular unit micro grafting, follicular unit transplantation, and follicular unit extraction, have made hair transplantation a virtually undetectable, viable option for many.