Hair Pyramid History

The 1800’s

The history of hair transplantation happens to be quite an interesting parallel between the first mode of transportation. As vehicles originally started as horse and carriage, hair transplants originated late in the seventeenth century. The first written record of a hair transplant was described by Dieffenbach and Unger who transplanted animal hair to humans. A half of century later, the first motor was invented in 1886 called the Benz Patent-Motorwagen created by German inventor Karl Benz. Following the creation of the first motor, towards the end of the late eighteen hundreds, the first car tire was invented by Michelin. The car tire consisted of rubber and constricted air making it the first pneumatic tire. As Michelin celebrated the invention of their new tire we still continue to use today, hair transplants also made a breakthrough. The introduction of flaps and grafts were welcomed  medical advances. The hair transplant moved from transplanting low grade hairs to local grafts and flaps.  Here surgeons would cut out portions of skin and attempt to close it with a flap. This was done and is still done by a select number of surgeons.

The 1940’s

Moving forward to 1938, the first Beetle is created. During this historical era, war was underway making it difficult to recover specific medical documents and breakthroughs. In 1930’s and 1940’s Dr. Okuda of Japan described placing plugs of tissues in hair bearing areas in need. Unfortunately, due to the warfare and the text being written in Japanese, little of his work was appreciated until later. As early as the 1950’s doctors removed portions of strips and implanted grafts from the back of the head to the frontal regions. In 1950, the Crosley station wagon is welcomed as an automobile advancement. It appeared to be that implanted strips and grafts dominated the hair market for a several decades.


In 2002, the manual FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) proved to be the new way to receive hair transplantation. Using this method doctors manually extracted hair follicles directly from the donor site rather than cutting a strip of scalp from the patients head. This allowed the patient to go through the procedure without having a piece of scalp cut, hair follicles harvested, and then later transplanting the hairs back into the balding areas. The issue with the strips and implanted grafts was that the treatment left behind a large scar in the back of the scalp and was often painful. As the manual FUE became readily available on the market, the Infiniti Q45 was welcomed onto the market with the first back-up camera.


In 2011 the ARTAS system was approved by the FDA to harvest hair follicles from dark haired men. The ARTAS system works best with dark hair but can be used on blondes if the patient dyes their hair 3 days before the procedure. The benefits of using an ARTAS robot versus having a technician manually extract each hair follicle is that the ARTAS will maintain overall quality of the entire procedure. The biggest benefit of the ARTAS is that the procedure time is cut in half by using advanced technology and the condition of the first and last extracted hair follicle will be exactly the same. The trouble with having a technician manually extract each follicle leaves the patient at risk of errors and low grade grafts.


Come 2018, the latest version of the ARTAS has become as painless and efficient as the Model S Tesla  which can actually drive itself with autonomous driving. Now Dr. Shah and Dr. Sameea combine the technological advances of the latest ARTAS with the advances in regenerative medicine.  We have found that regenerative medicine allows for results to be more consistent, patients experience less shedding early on, and even new hairs to grow!!

While the  parallel between the history of cars and hair transplants go relatively hand in hand. If you are considering a treatment option for hair loss, the best performing technology and obvious option is the ARTAS robot. While a 1985 Honda still may work, it is not as elegant as more modern solutions or as efficient.  Although the original hair restoration procedures work, so does a horse and carriage.  Using a combination of ARTAS and regenerative medicine we have found transplantation to be more efficient (both with time as well as properly using donor hairs)and require less hair grafts.  Hair transplantation is a rapidly evolving speciality.   More effective means of hair transplantation will continue to evolve and we hope patients will take advantage of the latest technological advances for their hair.