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About Stublue

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Hair Loss Overview

  • Describe Your Hair Loss Pattern
    Receding Hairline (Genetic Baldness)
  • How long have you been losing your hair?
    In the last 5 years
  • Norwood Level if Known
    Norwood III
  • What Best Describes Your Goals?
    Considering Surgical Hair Restoration

Hair Loss Treatments

  • Have you ever had a hair transplant?
  • Other hair restoration physicians
    Dr. Bisanga
  • Current Non-Surgical Treatment Regime
    Rogaine Extra Strength for Men
    Generic Minoxidil 5% for Men
    Nizoral Shampoo

Hair Loss Story

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  1. Hi guys, just thought i would post an update on my situation. As you can see from the previous post by BHR I went for a follow up 2nd procedure in mid 2014 to address my temple points and to fill in a small gap just behind my hairline. A total of c. 1,200 grafts. And the results were great per the above photos. 2 years later and I decided to go back to BHR for another small session (I clearly prefer smaller sessions to maintain the look rather than waiting and having larger sessions). This time around it was agreed that I would need around 750 grafts to address some continued weakness behind the transplanted hairline. To be fair the weakness was not noticeable at all and very easy to hide with a combed back look. It was more a case of hair greed on my part and as I said previously, I prefer small sessions as you dont have to shave the recipient and down time is significantly reduced! So in Jun-16 I had my 3rd op. with c. 850 grafts placed into my frontal half just behind the previously transplanted hairline. It was fairly plain sailing and I was back in work after a week without anyone noticing (due to the non-shaved recipient as I keep my back & sides short anyway). I had some mild shock loss in the donor area despite the small number of grafts. But this again was only really noticeable to me. Thankfully the hairline didn't suffer any shock loss. Anyway, its been just over 6 months since the op so thought I would post some photos. The growth is coming in nicely. The new hairs make it easier to style my hair without any disconnect between the hairline and the mid-scalp if that makes sense! So definitely worth the 850 grafts. In total, since Feb-13, I have had around 4,100 grafts placed into the front half and I believe I have c. 2,000 - 3,000 grafts left. As you can see from my first posts, I have come a long way and the result has been great!! My crown remains fairly strong (I use minox & nettle root but not propecia due to sides) but there is a fair chance I'll need to go back in a few years to address some further mid-scalp recession. A sparse crown doesn't bother me! So let me know if you have any questions or comments.
  2. Yeah I agree that strengthening temple points are worth the grafts. I had my first HT 3 years ago to the hairline (2,000 grafts) and had to have a small follow up HT a year later to address a small area behind the recipient that was missed the first time around. So at that stage I decided to also address the temple points as I felt their weakness was amplified by the strong new hairline. It just looked a little "off" to me! A little like a really good hair piece! While it was just a small touch up to the temple points, it took the guts of 700 grafts. But definitely well worth it as the face is definitely framed better. Granted, I'm now down 700 grafts that could have been used in the crown (if I need it in a few years) but I would prefer a well framed face with a weak crown to a stronger overall head of hair and a wide forehead! My 2 cents anyway.
  3. It was actually closer to 15 months for the first top up but I don't think there would be an issue after 12 months.
  4. Speaking from experience I would say its worth getting a small top-up if you feel the area could do with some beefing up! I've had 3 transplants. The first was 3.5 yrs ago and was to the hairline (c. 2,000 grafts). I then went for 2nd op a year later to address a small area behind the transplanted area that was missed the first time around (c. 500 grafts). I didn't suffer any shock loss on the 2nd HT and it definitely made a cosmetic difference! I had a 3rd HT (c. 850 grafts) 4 months ago to address some weakness in the mid-scalp (not on propecia and fully expect to have another HT in a few years). Like a previous poster said, I like the idea of smaller top-up ops to reduce overall trauma. Plus with small top-ups I don't have to shave my head, which helps a lot!! So far so good the 3rd time around. As i said above, I'm only 4 months post HT and the new grafts are definitely making a difference and adding weight to my frontal 3rd. Regarding shock loss, I think I had a small amount in the hairline but it wasn't in any way obvious and all seems to be fine now so that wasn't a problem. All HTs have been performed by Dr. Bisanga so having a highly recommended doc has been invaluable. So all in all, as long as you have a great doc who knows what he is doing, I'm a big fan of small follow-up procedures! Less traumatic, undetectable (if unshaved) and easier recovery!!
  5. Yeah you definitely shouldn't rush into a HT. It's not like visiting a dentist and it can have significant long term effects. Several key factors need to be considered before going down the HT route: Age Extent of loss Family history Donor quality Hair characteristics Willing to take meds If the above factors are favourable then you need to select a top notch doctor and you also need to have realistic expectations. With regards myself, I was in my early 30s, had a receding hairline (crown is okay), a mixed family history (father side not great but mothers side strong), above average donor are and wavy coarse hair (the best kind for HTs). I'm using rogaine and supplement with nettle root. I don't take finasteride due to sides. So I selected a very good doc with Dr. Bisanga and went for it. Frontal half is very strong now and I have no issues with the crown. I'm using rogaine on the crown and all seems well. I still have c. 3000 grafts left I believe if more work is needed but as i said previously I'm happy enough to have some loss in the crown.
  6. Interesting thread. Losing hair truly is a head f@ck. It's mentally draining and is something that is constantly in the back of your mind. I'm a very fit guy and also take pride in my appearance but no matter how hard I worked in the gym the first thing I saw when I looked in the mirror was a receding hairline which I had no control over!! I also think a receding hairline (and temple points) made me look a little frail and ill. Some people can pull it off but I can't! All my mates had great heads of hair (still do) and I was often teased about my hairline. My older brother, who has good hair, constantly slagged me too. So 3 years ago at the age of 31 I decided to do something about it. You only have one life and I was fed up with trying to conceal the receding hairline and applying caboki. 3 years later (and 2 further small ops, one just completed 2 months ago) and I have what most people would call a full head of hair! Nobody knows I've had any work done and I haven't been the butt of any jokes since (well in the hairline sense). I'm fully aware that my crown will likely weaken over the coming years but with my front 3rd addressed (4,000 grafts or so) I'm perfectly fine with that. The hairline and temple points, which I also addressed, provide a frame to my face. In my opinion I now look more fit and healthier!! People, who I haven't seen for years, tell me I look great and the gym work is paying off. But I'm pretty much the same build as I was pre-op! A decent hairline makes such a difference. So absolutely zero regrets. I don't necessarily completely agree that its a shallow thing to get done. Sure it may appear like an aesthetic issue but its more about self confidence and enjoying life more. It's more psychological. And so what if it is shallow anyway. Nothing wrong with trying to improve your appearance if it results in a happier person who will in turn provide more happiness to others!!
  7. That's great Pauly. Fair play to your girlfriend too! I decided against telling my new girlfriend even though I'm sure she would have been cool with it. Her friend (who I've met a few times) is a fellow doctor and he works in a hair restoration clinic in Dublin one day a week so she has heard all about HTs and doesn't have a problem with them. I just didn't want to tell her if I dont have to. By the way the Dublin clinic has a great rep but is way too expensive! Just as well as I may have bumped into her friend there (awkward!). Anyway, I had my small op last week (850 grafts) with Dr. Bisanga.. All went well and thankfully I didn't have to shave the recipient area. I was back in work this week after 7 days and nobody batted an eyelid. Even my housemate didn't notice anything and he saw me 3 days post op. Keeping the recipient unshaved makes recovery so much easier!! My girlfriend has been away but will be meeting up with her tomo but I'm pretty sure she won't notice anything except a slightly shorter haircut at the sides than usual. Barring any shock loss in the donor I think my secret Ht has been a success. I realise I should tell her but as I said earlier it's a new relationship and i wanted to keep it to myself. If all goes well in the relationship I will more than likely tell her in the future.
  8. Yeah im in the exact same boat. I previously had a 2,100 FUE procedure with Dr. Bisanga over 3 years ago and told nobody. I had to shave my entire head and was out of work for 2 weeks. I came up with a story that I got an infection from a cut and had to shave my head. People believed me (including my family) so I got away with it. I was single at the time so that wasn't a problem!! Now I'm heading back next month for another small op to strengthen the area right behind the hairline. Around 750 grafts or so. Thankfully as its a small op, I believe I won't have to shave the recipient but the donor will be shaved. Not a major problem as I keep my hair short at the sides anyway. This time around I have a girlfriend so that's a problem!! Fairly new relationship too and I don't want to tell her. I've planned the op for a week that she is away so I will have around 7 days for the donor to heal and should be able to camouflage the recipient with the existing hair. She is a doctor so I really hope she doesn't notice anything as I can't really make up a story about an infection!!! If it's still obvious I might just have to tell her but I really don't want to. We shall see!
  9. Yeah there is the risk of shock loss with any surgery but the question is wether or not a small op is worth the risk. Also risk of shock loss is potentially greater when implanting into an unshaven area but I believe that's largely down to the skill of the doc.
  10. Looks good, wouldn't know you had anything done. I'm in a similar position to you. Had my first surgery over 3 years ago with Dr. Bisanga and I'm heading back for another small op next month. I've been quoted around 750 grafts to strengthen up the mid section just behind the hairline. It's easy to hide now with a bit of styling but I prefer the idea of smaller maintenance ops than larger ops so want to address it now. Also like yourself I don't want to shave the recipient as I have to be back in work after a week and have to attend a wedding 3 weeks after. No problem with shaving the donor as I keep that pretty short anyway (blade 2 normally). I guess with smaller ops there is the risk of shock loss but my view is that these hairs are on their way out anyway. Best of luck with the growth!!
  11. Yeah, I seem to be in the same boat as peabody. I had a HT 3 years ago (c. 2100 grafts) and the area right behind the hairline has weakened. I'm not on fin as I had sides but am using minox and nizoral. I also supplement with nettle root. The loss is not noticeable at all when I style my hair but its enough to annoy me!! So, I'm due to have another HT with Dr. Bisanga next month. Ive been quoted c. 500-750 grafts so its a small op. I prefer the idea of maintaining a HT with smaller FUE sessions rather than waiting another few years and going for a bigger op. Plus smaller ops allow the recipient to be non-shaven which makes recovery so much easier (not to mention keeping it hidden from others!). I realise shock loss is a concern but I'm willing to take that risk (plus any hairs that are permanently lost are on their way out anyway).
  12. I agree that non-shaven is a little more difficult for the doctor to perform the surgery and certainly more time consuming. Hence, it's only really viable for a small(ish) number of grafts and the skill of the doctor is paramount. I actually had a small top up of 500 grafts a year after my HT to address a small area that was missed and the recipient was not shaved down for that. Recovery was so much easier and it was undetectable by day 7! I had zero issues with aftercare and had an excellent result from the small number of grafts. Any yep plotholes, ill be getting my hair cut with a blade 2 on the sides on the day before surgery so when the donor is shaved it should blend fairly well with the top.
  13. Well I had my HT with Dr. Bisanga when I was 31 (3 years ago) and he was aware that I was not taking finasteride. I tried it for a year before the op but the sides (virtually no libido) were not worth it. Plus I was never really comfortable taking the drug but each to their own. I'm now taking nettle root extract as well as using minoxidil (once a day) and nizoral (2-3 times a week). My crown remains fairly strong. By not taking the meds I was fully aware that future HTs would be needed but I was fine with that. I'm actually going back to Dr. Bisanga in Jun. I'm getting around 750 grafts into the area just behind the transplanted hair in the mid-scalp as there is some weakness there. Its not noticeable at all and most would say that I have a full head of hair but I guess hair greed is getting the better of me. Plus I like the idea of having small FUE sessions to maintain the hair rather than waiting a few more years for a larger op. In addition, I probably won't have to shave the recipient area due to the small number of grafts so recovery will be a lot easier. I realise shock loss is a concern but any permanently lost hairs are on their way out anyway. In an ideal world everyone would be on finasteride and sides wouldn't exist but they clearly do (although placebo definitely plays a role too). I am happy to progress with my HT journey without finasteride and am fully aware that I'll likely be back in the chair again in the next 10 years or so. Its more expensive granted but my sexual health is priceless!! I am fortunate in that I have very good hair characteristics (wiry and thick hair) and a pretty good donor supply. I am also realistic and am aware that the crown will probably weaken a lot more over the next few years but the crown isn't really a concern of mine. If I have good coverage in the frontal half (hairline already taken care of) then I'll be a happy man. I can live with a sparse crown! That's my two cents anyway.
  14. Yeah, I'm due to have my 3rd HT in June with Dr. Bisanga and my preference is the non-shave option. In the recipient area that is, I have no issues in shaving the donor. My first HT over 3 years ago involved 2,100 grafts (FUE) to my hairline and I had my head completely shaved for that. My 2nd HT in May-14 involved 1,200 grafts (FUE again) and I only shaved the donor area. 700 of the grafts were placed into my temple points while 500 were placed into an area just behind the hairline that was missed first time round. Recovery the 2nd time was so much easier. I had a bit of a nightmare first time round with bad shock loss in the donor and very slow growth in the recipient! After the 2nd HT I was out with friends after day 8 and nobody noticed a thing (luckily I keep my sides very short anyway). So with the 3rd HT im just looking to strengthen the area behind the hairline. Its not too bad and I've been quoted 500 - 750 grafts. I prefer the idea of maintaining a HT with smaller FUE sessions rather than waiting another few years and going for a bigger op. Plus smaller ops allow the recipient to be non-shaven which makes recovery so much easier (not to mention keeping it hidden from others!). I realise shock loss is a concern but I'm willing to take that risk (plus any hairs that are permanently lost are on their way out anyway).
  15. Yep, looks like its about to kick off!! Right on track.