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  1. Hello everyone, I am a hair loss patient from China. After studying for a few months in the forum, I chose Dr. Kaan to transplant and agreed to transplant 3,000 units. 9.17 I arrived at Ankara, Turkey, and saw kaan. He hired a Chinese translator for me and it was free. However, Dr. Kaan checked my hair and thought that I was not suitable for hair transplant and refused to transplant for me. At that time, I was very depressed and could not accept the result. The doctor said that my pillow resources were not very good. However, I strongly urged that the transplant be continued. Dr. Kaan wanted to transplant 1000 units for me. After transplanting to 100 units, Dr. Kaan terminated the operation because my hair follicles were of poor quality. Finally, Dr. Kaan refunded my deposit. Thank you Dr. Kaan, he is a very responsible doctor. He didn't want to make my money. I came from far away China and knew that he is very famous. It is true, although I did not have surgery at the end, but the doctor I was very touched by the free transfer of 100 units for me. Now, I have accepted the result. I am a patient who is not suitable for hair transplant. My life has to continue. I will not have the illusion of hair growth in the future. I will accept my life. Finally, I chose to play in Turkey for a few days. The scenery in Turkey is very beautiful. Thank you, Dr. Kaan, and finally sent me to the airport for free. It can be said that Dr. Kanan saved me because if I chose another doctor, the result is doomed to be a failure.
  2. In 1989 I was a college freshman with thin hair that was starting to fall out. Graduated in 1993 and had considerable hair loss. By 1994 I was almost done hair-wise, very traumatic for a young man who is just starting his life, I freaked. That winter, watching a late night informercial on HT's, I though I had the answer. After two consultations with the 'Dr.', I fell for the micro/mini graft, very small scar, full head of hair, etc from this Long Island Medical practice. No internet at the time and I didn’t even know plugs were a thing and as been repeated as I have recently read up on numerous message boards, “You trust a doctor and never would you think they could be so unethical.” This is much different thn a snake oil salesman selling a hairpiece. This is a doctor doing surgery that lasts a lifetime. As a young man I should have understood the supply and demand model and I still kick myself in the ass falling for the full head of hair BS. 3 Procedures winter and spring of 94. By fall I was obviously very unsatisfied. Unnatural small plug look with a few large ones, bad distribution, horrible donor strip scarring, etc, etc. My hair is kind of fine/thin so I feel it was not as bad as some I saw as I noticed more people with plugs (never really noticed them until after my ordeal started) but now I was stuck and stupidly went for one more ‘free’ procedure as I was told they just need to make it more dense.The next 4 years I got by and since my hair is fine/thin texture, under certain lighting, dark, sun, etc it just looked like a young man getting pretty bald. Under many other situations, angles, etc you could see the plugs, cobble-stoning, unnatural hairline, etc. I got by, met a nice girl (now my wife) who never really noticed until I opened up to her, etc, etc. Some days, and even to this day, people don’t notice. Other times in a conversation I could see eyes look at my hairline. Sometime when I am out I see, or just maybe imagine, people checking out my hair/hairline. Myself, as I wrote, I got by but was, and still, always self conscience.In 1998 I visited Dr. Bernstein (at the time he was with NHI in Ft Lee NJ) and felt he was very honest though understandably I lost all faith in the medical community, especially cosmetic medicine. He explained what he and Dr Rassman were doing (which now made more sense to me) and how he could try to camouflage. I can say that I think Dr. Bernstein used some of the best technique that 1998 technology provided and he tried to camouflage my pluggy look. I forgot how many grafts I received and the ones he added were the size he stated but my coverage, and at that point I was very realistic, was still less thn desirable. This is in no way a bash of Dr Bernstein as he never up-sold me, never promised a full head of hair, etc. He was ethical and honest with his graft size/hair per graft, no bumps from his grafts, and it was definitely an improvement though not what I thought it would be. I understood a full head of hair would never be in the cards for me but thought I would get more camouflage in my hairline and coverage. I’ve lived the most normal life I can since thn though I am always self conscious. So here I am today, 25+ years in this journey and things are changing. I have lost even more hair recently (crown area getting even larger) and I am graying. The contrast between my skin, gray hair and dark have given me a more pluggy look. Also, I don’t mind being bald but so is the case of a 48 year old compared to 23 year old staring out life. I actually think I pull off the very thin/very balding look ok and I do not even mind my gray hair. That said, I’d like to look more natural (or at least less pluggy) and maybe even fill in more spots to even out the thinness. My donor area seems kinda depleted so I am not sure how possible any of this is. I am looking at a few possibilities to just move forward being less self conscious as my life moves on. I have no problem with my scalp showing and just want a more natural appearance. I could care less if the plugs in my crown are removed/re-distributed to other areas as my crown will never be covered anyhow. Some things I’d like to accomplish if even possible or recommended. 1) Remove larger plugs in my crown area slice them into smaller grafts and redistribute them to areas of need to try to maybe balance out my thin appearance 2)Remove larger plugs in my hairline and a lil behind hairline dissect and re-distribute them to that same area or others depending what doc says. (Does plug excursion and re-distribution grow at a decent rate or is the return rate poor? What about scarring? Blood supply/flow to the head if plugs are removed and redistributed.)3) See how that goes and if I have any hair left to use in my donor area, just use that to even out some coverage for a thin or more natural appearance in areas of need. With FUE has the donor hair expanded to your sides?4) Fixing my donor scars if even possibleI do not know what is possible but I do know technology and techniques have changed since 1998. I also know, though many docs are very reputable I am very nervous having someone touch my scalp again. I have started reading message boards on HT repairs, articles, researching Dr’s etc. For you young bucks and older gents out there thinking of getting HT’s, you have great resources and you truly need to do your HW. I am shocked that there are still ‘doctors’ who will do bad work and destroy peoples lives. It is all really sad and sickening on so many levels. I live outside of Princeton NJ. Some of the Dr’s in my area that have popped on my radar in my short research are Dr. Bernstein, True and Dorin, Dr Carlos Wesley, Feller/Bloxham, . Anyone have any experience with their plug excursion and re-distribution? What other Dr’s should I put on my radar as I start my research? I am not against travel and have just started reading up on Dr. Cooley in NC, Dr. Lindsey in Va (against excursion), etc. Thn again, I have no clue and do not want to fall for some sales pitch again. Cost is also a factor though I will cross that bridge when it comes and make my decision. That said, who else should I look into? I’m sure I will have more questions but here we go with my first post. Thank you for reading and I look forward to answers and more discussion on this in this thread. Thank you in advance to any and all who read my journey and help answer any questions I've asked and will ask.
  3. I had a "Celebrity FUE" procedure at Dr. Parsa Mohebi's office yesterday in Encino, CA. This is my initial post and will detail my journey with this procedure. I will continue to post occasionally until the final result is achieved. About Celebrity FUE / Unshaven FUE Procedures For those who don't know, "Celebrity FUE" is the term Dr. Mohebi has used to describe what is also known as a "non-shaved FUE procedure." On his website, he details both that this is a non-shaved procedure, that "the Celebrity FUE technique allows patients to keep their hair long during their procedure." I have attached screenshots of these statements to this post. At this time of writing, there is also a video on his Celebrity FUE page which says, "we don't cut, trim, or shave any hair." Why I Chose Dr. Parsa Mohebi As a public health professional, my top priority is to conceal my hair transplant from my patients while also getting good results. I had initially booked an FUE procedure with Dr. John Diep, but Dr. Diep told me he would need to shave the baby hairs on my hairline to implant the grafts. Although I admired his results more than anyone else I had seen within the US, ultimately, his statement led to me canceling the procedure with him. After reviewing many, many other surgeons, I scheduled a consultation with Dr. Mohebi., who I had bookmarked from my prior search - specifically because he offers a "Celebrity FUE" procedure. It was the most expensive of options I could have chosen, but concealing the transplant was critical to me, even if the results might not be as ideal to me - as long as it was good enough. Another selling point to me was that he said, as he does on his website, that "80% of transplanted grafts will already have your longer hair." During the consultation, I was assured like the videos that there would be no cutting of my current hair so that I could completely conceal the transplant. Additionally, when I asked Dr. Mohebi if he performs the surgery himself, he said straightforwardly said "yes." He reinforced that the grafts would be of my longer hair and said I would see a good preview of what my hair would look like after the full results were achieved. Not only was this attractive to me because I could conceal the transplant, but also potentially pull off a more enhanced hair look for the first month after the surgery. Surgery Day / The Experience The meeting I had with him in-person the day before the procedure went well. We examined my loss pattern with a microscope and determined the density of various areas, particularly the donor area. I showed him pictures of my hair loss progression over two decades (starting at 16 years old, I'm now about to turn 36). We created a long-term plan for my hair restoration that included potentially rebuilding the temples at some point (though not necessary) and thickening the crown and vertex at a later date when it is needed. When I arrived the next morning to begin the surgery, he asked me if we could trim my baby hairs around my hairline. Whenever anyone says trim, it means literally to trim - not shave or buzz off. Even though I did not give consent to this on the written forms, I said yes verbally because I knew he was indicating that doing so would provide optimal results for incision and inserting the grafts. He then told me there would be a few ladies assisting him during the procedure. I imagined these assistants would help with graft harvesting and counting. Once I was in the chair, I was sedated with laughing gas and one Valium. Once sedated, he requested "the clippers" from one of the technicians and buzzed off about a half-inch all around the hairline on my crown - my hairline now resembling an old Nicholas Cage. I was not happy, but it was too late, I was sedated, and there was no point in pulling out at this point. Once I was fully sedated, Dr. Mohebi used his syringe to provide me with good local anesthesia as needed. The pain was more minimal than a regular injection you would receive from a lab technician doing bloodwork. Dr. Mohebi then began extracting a number of grafts from my donor area using a tool that made drilling-like noises - the puncher, I assume. I do not believe this tool was used on extracting all of my grafts, and Dr. Mohebi himself did not extract all of my grafts. After a short period of time, probably around a half hour, and while my head was now positioned down facing the floor, I stopped hearing his voice but felt the work continuing. When I asked what was happening and where Dr. Mohebi went, the four female technicians said "he has left to do other things while we catch up for him with the graft removal and placement process." This process continued, largely without Dr. Mohebi for the remaining 9 hours of the 10 hour surgery. The female technicians continued to chat with each other thoroughout the surgery. Dr. Mohebi would check in about once every two hours for about five or ten minutes to see how things were going, usually to administer more local anesthesia (I assume the technicians are not able to do this). Once he came in and rotated a couple of grafts that one of his technicians had inserted for him, I heard him say "these here need to be turned around." I was not happy with this process since I was told he would be conducting the surgery and there was no mention of technicians who would essentially be doing the whole procedure for him - technicians whose credentials I have no knowledge of and that I was not able to evaluate prior to my surgery. It is my understanding that all graft removal and placements are critical to the outcome results of the surgery. I would say Dr. Mohebi was in the room for a total of less than one hour for the ten hour procedure, and often for only 5-10 minutes at a time, usually to administer more local anesthesia. I did not vocalize my unhappiness during the procedure. The last thing I wanted to do was cause a stink while a group of people are operating on my head whose mood/focus I might affect. But I was not happy. A significant amount of the hair that I use for coverage of my temples had been buzzed off, and the process of the surgery was not what I was told it would be. I could have seen Dr. Diep for the same offered procedure (a buzzing of my baby hairs with FUE grafts) for thousands of dollars less and more density/grafts! The extra precautions I had requested be taken with Dr. Mohebi to conceal my operation and keep my hair have not only been been compromised, but disregarded when the doctor knew this was my top priority. Additionally, though he told me in an email prior that 80% of the grafts would contain my longer hair so I could see a preview of the results, he said at the end of the surgery that only half of the implanted grafts had hair. The hairs that were there were not my full length either, so it seemed pointless to me that we did this method of a procedure at all. The procedure itself was not painful. The four female technicians were very polite, though it did bother me that I had no idea they would be performing the surgery and what their experience/credentials were, if they were rented assistants, etc.... There were a couple of bad (i.e. mildly painful) punches that happened on occasion, but it was so minor that it barely registered. The most uncomfortable part was the pressure on my forehead from laying forward for a long time, and my hands/arms would go numb from laying them underneath my chest. I took three breaks in total throughout the 10 hour surgery - one of them for lunch, and the other two to use the bathroom. In total, I received 1567 grafts. Of those grafts, roughly 338 were triples, another 950 were doubles, and 279 were singles. I was given Valium, some extra strength Tylenol, and Prednisone to help me through the first days of recovery. Next Day Follow-up Meeting In my follow-up meeting the next day, one of the technicians from the surgery showed me how to wash my hair for the next four days. I felt the post-operation procedures were explained to me thoroughly. Finally, I met once more with Dr. Mohebi for about 10 minutes. I told him that I had a comfortable surgery experience with minimal pain, and that I was looking forward to seeing how the results turned out, but that I was very disappointed with how much of my hair was buzzed (not trimmed), which would compromise the concealing of my hair transplant, and also that I didn't appreciate how he told me he would do the surgery but in the end his technicians did. Although I could tell he was trying to remain professional in his response, he was quite defensive. At one point, he told me "I was there for most of the procedure, you just didn't see me because your head was down." I told him I knew this wasn't true because I heard every time he entered and left the room, and that I confirmed his absence with the technicians. He looked surprised. He then told me at least he did all of my graft extractions and incisions. I told him this was also not 100% true, because the technicians told me they were continuing to do extractions for him while he was gone. He then told me it was in my best interest to not have him insert my grafts anyway, because "I am not good at graft insertion. When I try to do it, my technicians laugh at me." I believe he continued to minimize his role in selling me on a procedure that did not meet our shared understanding and agreement. Finally, he was able to say: "I'm sorry. Thank you for your feedback. I will certainly consider it in how I advertise this procedure going forward." I was calm and rational with him throughout this conversation, but I was pretty upset with the accruing dishonesty made by this man, further reinforced by his responses to me during the conversation. I made my point clear though: I was lied to about the details of the procedure. My remaining hair looks drastically different and will not provide the coverage or natural lift as an unshaven head would have provided to conceal the operation, which is what we were going for. Far fewer implanted hairs are in place, and the ones that are look out of place. He told me he would be performing the surgery. He did not mention it would be completed by technicians nor that he his involvement would be minimal, let alone that he is "not good at graft insertion." I paid $21,000 for this procedure. I could have achieved 2000-2500 grafts with Diep for the same process of a procedure (and he was honest with me about it). I believe I was sold with a bait and switch approach here, and that hurts, given how much trust, vulnerability, and investment goes into this process. Had me told me from the first consultation when I asked him my questions and said, "we may need to shave part of your hair for optimal results, and my technicians do most of the work," then I could have made a more educated choice. I'm more than sure he was aware of this. These doctors are salesmen and marketers too, not just surgeons. Having said all of this, I do look forward to seeing how the results come out. I really do. I like the hairline that Dr. Mohebi drew for me. In 12 months I am hopeful that I will feel happier with my appearance than I do today. If the results are good, which I am hopeful they may be, it will be a significant improvement to my self-esteem and long-term concerns about my hair. But it doesn't change the facts of what happened, the bait-and-switch tactics, and the enormous additional cost to have a procedure done that did not do what it said it would do or performed by who said he would perform it. The procedure itself was not painful. What is painful is that the top reason I chose this particular procedure and to pay the incredibly high cost for its specialty approach was pointless. Not to mention the emotional pain of putting my trust, vulnerability, and a high premium financial investment into a procedure that could have been replicated cheaper and with an outcome that I believe would have been more desirable. And so regardless of my final results here, which I hope are good, it won't erase the reality of what has transpired here. I believe that I had the right to have the realistic process explained to me given my questions, concerns, and priorities for having the procedure with Dr. Parsa Mohebi. I will continue to post and update on my progress over the months ahead. I have attached pictures for exhibit of what is currently advertised as a Celebrity FUE procedure on his website, along with an email exchange, and pre-op pics of my hair and now post-op pics of my hair. While it is too late to go back in time, and although l am upset and have lost more money (and potentially though hopefully not compromised my results), my hope is that for those of you reading this you will realize how important it is to ask every little detail about the procedure. Even when I asked "will you be performing the procedure?" and received an immediate and straightforward "yes," it was later minimized and defended post-op by him saying "but I was there." We need more transparency and honesty in marketing. When it's not there, one cannot help but wonder why.
  4. You’ve been given some great names. I’ll add hasson and wong, Dr. Gabel, Dr. Mohebi, Dr. Bloxham is in NY so definitely worth a visit. Most definitely True&Dorin as well. If I’m not mistaken the place you went to in Long Island had a sanitation worker performing surgery- this is why our community is so important. If you have any questions feel free to pm me anytime. Glad you found us were here to help. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.nydailynews.com/news/hair-raising-tale-deceit-article-1.176678%3foutputType=amp
  5. Introduction: I’m a 25 YO male, suffering from hair-loss since around 20 years old, and so I have been on Propecia ever since; Propecia managed to considerably slow my hair-loss in the crown area, but less so in my temples. This is why I have decided that it’s time to undergo a hair transplant. I have researched countless clinics and doctors in Europe/UK. I have also requested consultation of many; the main concern from all the clinics was that my hairless is progressive and I will definitely bald some more in the future, and therefore, I needed to choose the best to have a solid plan in place to not look bald at any point. After researching extensively for a year, I was convinced to go with Dr Bijan Feriduni as he is; Properly licensed/accredited by all the relevant societies/qualifications. Has a vast amount of experience with countless successful cases, many of them more severe than mine. Despite being significantly more expensive than Istanbul, I found that the price difference was well worth the added quality and personalization from Dr. Feriduni. Bearing in mind that his pricing is still less expensive than known clinics in the UK, making his services fairly priced. The consultation I got from Dr Feriduni was personalized and make a lot of sense to me. Here are some pictures; Day 0: Consultation, transplant, and tricho-pigmentation This is both the consultation and transplantation day. I arrived at the clinic around 08:00 AM. I was greeted by lovely receptionists and escorted to my private room. Which had couches, a medical bed, drawers for storage, water etc… After signing the contract and wearing the ‘OR clothes’ provided by the clinic I headed to the doctor’s office. The doctor is very friendly, humble, listened to all my thoughts and ideas and shows true care; this made me much more at ease. He then proceeded by taking photos with his microscope for the donor count etc… and made a long term plan based on donor availability. I was happy with the hair line which more or less resembled my previous hair line before the hair-loss started. Here are some before photos during the consultation; In the OR my head was shaved to 0.9mm, which gave me a mini panic attack 😅, however the nervousness was very short lived as Dr Feriduni administered midazolam; a rapid sedative that made me feel at ease in less than 10 seconds! This picture was taking of my donor and crown right before the operation started. You can tell that my crown area has very thin hairs, but Dr Feriduni suggested to cover that with pigmentation rather than a transplant in order to see the progress of the hairloss allowing the most efficient use of the valuable donor area! The Anesthetic injections were the only uncomfortable part, I expected them to be much more painful, but they were actually not all that bad. After the injections you don’t feel any kind of pain nor discomfort during extraction and implementation. It’s worthwhile to mention that extraction was done by the experienced assistants of the doctors, and so was the implementation (apart from the hairline which was done by Dr Feriduni). The doctor also made the incision opening before the extraction himself, to reduce the time that extracted grafts stay out of my body. In general, the operation was comfortable and I was watching friend on Netflix the entire time! The only uncomfortable part was extraction, as you’d have to lay down on your face for a while on a massage type bed, and you face is bound to get numb after a while. However, there wasn’t any actual pain from the extraction process itself. I then proceeded to have a BLT sandwich in my clinic room, before heading to the OR again for the trichopigmentation done by Dr. Yasmine Feriduni (BIjan’s wife), she is also very friendly and lively! The trichopigmentation was not painful at all, especially for the fact that my scalp was somewhat numb from the operation. Trichopigmentation should immediate density effect when compared to my pre photo. Here are some immediate post-op photos, notice the denser crown area from the pigmentation (also shown in the microscope) ! After this I went home, had dinner, and took Ibuprofen 600mg (pain killer) along with promethazine (which I bought with me; an antihistamine which helps me sleep and would reduce itchiness later on). I must say that the hardest part was sleeping with a sticky head on the neck pillow as oppose to my usually sleep on my stomach face buried in the pillow! I was given a saline hair spray (to use every 30 minutes) along with a foaming shampoo, serums, oil, and vitamins. Also I do recommend taking the Feriduni discount for the nearby Hassotel, which had great breakfast, and a spacious room and private terrace (if you choose the penthouse suit). Day 3: Second trichopigmentation session Its worthwhile to mention that I got a hair wash on day 2 in the clinic, and again at day 3, in which I also got another pigmentation session, this time without any anasthesia, but it wasn't actually painful but rather a bit uncomfortable. Some day 3 pictures; At this day I had no pain whatsoever. I also opted from using the neck pillow and instead made a "pillow castle" in a way which would prevent from rolling over or touching the grafts against the pillow while maintaining a 45 degree angle. At evening I went to a delicious sushi Resturant which is 5 minutes away from the hotel In which I enjoyed sushi along with ASAHI Japanese beer (Doctor allowed me a couple of beers ) !
  6. Dr Bloxham has some great recent results - however I would caution that Dr.Bloxham is relatively new as compared to other options with super long track records in NYC - I've seen some pretty amazing results coming from Dr Carlos Wesley in NYC - if you stack up recent patient and clinic results from True/Dorin, Bloxham, Bernstein, Wesley........I dont think anyone is coming close to Wesley for number of homeruns...........next I would say True/Dorin for the extensive track record......Bloxham is coming up however but if you asked each doctor for their total transplants performed in their career I think he would be well behind these guys and I'd like a doctor who's seen every possible situation in their career or in the OR
  7. Hi all, I will keep it short, I am planning to plan a trip to Turkey for my hair transplant, I have crown, a little bit on top and a little front to sort out. I was quoted 3-4K grafts. Im in dilemma as I am not able who to trust and looking at those google reviews they look too good to be true. Shortlisted it to a few doctors, Dr. Safiye Kurt, Dr. Cinik, Dr. Demisorey, Dr. Erdogan AMSED, your personal experience and honest opinion would be highly appreciated. My range is between EUR 1800 to EUR 3000 (max). Thanks for you honest opinions.
  8. Hi everyone, I’ve been a long time reader of this site while I’ve been on my own hairloss journey, and similar to many other people, I’ve decided to share my story and details of my procedure here to help anyone else who may be planning a similar path and would like to see my experience. The background I’m now 33, and I initially realised I was thinning around 10 years ago. My older brother thinned around a similar time, my Grandad was bald though my Dad (in his 60's) still has thin hair coverage. Initially it was just on the crown of my head before it thinned on my temples and I tried a number of solutions before realising I needed to take Finasteride and to look into Regaine / Rogaine products. I joined the hair restoration programme at Boots here in the UK, and paid the equivalent of £1 a day for Propecia. I’m very fortunate in that I don’t think I have had any side effects at all! I tried Regaine, but after a year I really didn’t notice any difference so I stopped it. About two years ago, when I moved to Barcelona, I started taking a generic form of Finasteride which is available over the counter in Spain. It’s in 5mg pills which I cut into four segments and I take one a day, at a cost of about 10 Euros for about 4 months’ worth (far more cost effective…). I also began shaving my head short (not skinhead, but shortly cropped) – and I had a micropigmentation procedure (basically a tattoo on my head) that certainly helps my head look a darker shade, but didn’t really solve the hairloss issue. While I feel happy that the finasteride has slowed down the hair loss and the pigmentation procedure helped disguise my situation, I’ve never been happy with the crown / corners of my hair and so I’ve worn either Toppik or Mane Hair Thickening Spray (dark brown) for a while which I feel covers up my hair loss really well. However, as soon as I lean against a white wall or sleep in a bed that doesn’t have dark bedsheets, I leave behind a black mess and I always knew I’d go down the hair transplant route one day. Plus I was recently with a dude who ran his hand through my hair then saw the black mess on his hand and was like ‘what’s this?’. Let’s just say I’d prefer not to deal with that kind of embarrassing situation again. Deciding on the hair transplant An ex of mine told me he’d gone to Este Grande in Istanbul for his transplant but it seemed a little too cheap to be true. He’s only just had his procedure and I think it looks great, but it’s too soon to tell and I didn’t want to choose price over quality reviews. Another ex had gone with DHI Global in Greece (I seem to have dated a lot of people with hair loss issues huh?), though I’d read some reviews of DHI that didn’t make me feel confident. I used these forums and found out about Dr. Erkan Demirsoy / Armamed and took some time looking through his work and reading through forum posts from people who’d chosen him, and I was sold. As I don’t need to create a new hairline (just lots of focus on the crown and temples) then I feel confident that for his price, it would be the best for me. He’s quoted me the standard 3500 – 4000 hairs, for 1.25 Euro a graft. I booked, and fortunately he had space in about 6 weeks’ time from when I booked. Today I'm flying from London (where I currently live) into Istanbul and my procedure is tomorrow on April 17th. I fly back to the UK on the 19th where I’ll spend a week with my family recovering and stuffing my swollen face with Easter Eggs. I’ve included some pictures here which show my hair before the MSP procedure and after the MSP procedure, and my current situation where I’ve grown my hair a bit which will help Dr D see the whole hair picture, which isn’t so easy to see due to the MSP procedure I had. You may notice my hairline isn’t all that straight (ironically) but that doesn’t really bother me – I’m happy with where my hairline is and would only want the temples filled in. I usually use Mane HT spray as I think it provides a really good cover up solution and some of you reading this may find it’s a better, temporary solution while you consider the transplant path. Final words I’m really looking forward to the procedure and will do everything I can to get the best yield. I’m a non-drinker or smoker, and I'll do my best to follow all the professional advice I can to get a good result. I play sport a lot – mainly cycling, lots of rowing, weightlifting and I walk everywhere so I’ll be keen to get back into that afterwards. My biggest fear in all this is being 6’5” (195cm) and the fact I hit my head everywhere I go….the metro…doorframes…lampshades…low hanging branches. Finally, something I’ve learnt from what I’ve read is to manage my expectations. I’m not expecting that I’ll come out of this (after a year) with a full head of hair. I just want MORE hair in the places that are thinning, and to not feel like I’m 53 when I’m 33 and to not leave a dark brown trail mark in white areas. All future posts will be shorter but I wanted to give you the background to my journey. The following post will show the pictures on surgery day and please feel free to ask me anything or comment as I’d love to share my experience with you all.
  9. Excellent Presentation and very educational video @DrPradeep. You and @Dr Arika Bansal and all your team @Eugenix Hair Science are true leaders in the world of Hair Transplantation. You have been consistently showing really really impressive results over many years now . I look forward to my trip to India and meeting you Dr.Pradeep for my own Hair Transplantation the week after next. .........................Paddy..........................
  10. Patient presented with a Norwood Class 4 pattern with the intent of restoring density to the frontal recession and crown region. He had undergone an initial FUE elsewhere that was not successful. Total of 773 grafts allocated to the vertex and 2573 grafts to the frontal third. *Manual motorized FUE * Prp/Acell *Propecia
  11. My story. This website has given me a huge amount of information, and to be honest I wouldn’t have gone through with my recent hair transplant surgery if it wasn’t for this forum. Therefore I feel obliged to give back to the community and tell everyone here about my story. I have split this up into 2 parts and several chapters. I suggest that any new comers, or people who haven’t themselves had a HT read the whole thing. The more experienced members on this forum are probably better off picking out the parts of interest as I admit it is long winded. DISCLAIMER - Just to point out, that I am not a doctor, I don’t represent any doctors, and I have nothing to gain whatsoever from writing this (other than alleviating the guilt of taking so much from this website and never giving anything back). I take no responsibility at all for any decisions anyone makes from my post (or any future post), and I mean no offence where my comments get controversial. I also have another user name on this website that I am not using now as some of the HT surgeons I refer to anonymously below will be revealed by doing a simple search under my old user name. So yes I created this account now, and this is my first post. If anyone wants to ask me a question by all means do, but I won’t be checking this very often so please don’t get offended in my delay in answering. Here is the breakdown in case you want to pick and choose what you want to read. PART 1 – MY STORY. A – ABOUT ME. B – HOW I CHOSE MY HT SURGEON. C – SHAPIRO MEDICAL GROUP. D – THANKS TO… PART 2 – LESSONS LEARNT. A – MY THOUGHTS ON THE COALITION LIST AND THIS WEBSITE. B – WHAT CRITERIA WHEN CHOOSING A HT SURGEON. C – THE PYSCHOLOGICAL CHALLENGE ** MAYBE THE MOST IMPORTANT PART TO READ. D – RESEARCH. E – OPERATION ITSELF. F – TIME BEFORE GOING OUT INTO PUBLIC - GROW YOUR HAIR AS LONG AS POSSIBLE. G – THINGS I SUGGEST YOU BUY PRIOR TO SURGERY. H – INCONVINIANCES AFTER SURGERY. I – OTHER THINGS. PART 1 – MY STORY. A – ABOUT ME. I am a NW 2 – 3, and am now in my mid 30s. I have been receding slowly all my life and it wasn’t until November 2010 when out at dinner that a very close friend made a innocent comment about my hairline. I had always thought to myself that one day I would have a HT to rebuild my hairline, but you never really expect that day to arrive when it does. I went to my dermatologist and he immediately prescribed propeceia. I absolutely ruled it out from day 1 for two reasons. 1 – I know myself and I don’t want to take a pill every day for the rest of my life that wasn’t originally created for hair loss. 2 – I have heard too many horror stories about propeceia. (Now I have so much that I want to share with this community that I really don’t want to go into the whole Propecia debate!! If any of you want more info there is loads of it on this forum and also there is a website called propeciahelp.com which is a totally biased appraisal of propecia and seems to be the Mecca of all disgruntled propecia users, but at the same time it left an impact with great enough effect on me that I will never ever take it. To conclude, propecia was more of a physiological decision for me as the slightest underperformance in the bedroom would have had me panicking that it was the meds.) Instead I went on Biotin on a daily basis. My recession from November 2010 to the date of my HT surgery was very minor but this of course could be coincidental. B – HOW I CHOSE MY HT SURGEON. At the time I made the decision to go for a HT I discovered this web site from a Google search and there is an absolutely HUGE amount of information here. It actually became a bit of an obsession. I spent about an hour at the end of every working day reading stories and educating myself. For all newbies, I suggest you click on “today’s posts” and go through them every day. It’s amazing how much you learn (make sure you read my Part 2 – A below though). My dermatologist recommended a local HT surgeon and told me all the usual words “he is the best there is”, “Hollywood stars have gone to him” etc… I went to visit him (please don’t ask me in private messages who, as I don’t want to discredit him as I chose not to go with him) and to be honest I was impressed with his credentials, but there wasn’t enough before and after photos, and I felt that I didn’t get a chance to ask him everything I wanted as I felt rushed. All round the chemistry was wrong between us. I also went to see another doctor I found on this website (again no names) and who gets a lot of coverage and has a good reputation and I personally wasn’t at all impressed with him or his setup. (more below). So I read more and more and I realized entirely from this forum that I had to go and visit Dr. Ron Shapiro. His description as being very consistent, conservative and good with hairlines jumped out t me. I had 2 more backup doctors to go and visit if I didn’t like him. I happened to be in the west coast for work back in April so on my way home to Europe I flew to Minneapolis and I went and saw Dr. Ron Shapiro and I knew right away that he was the one for me. Well I took up an hour and a half of Matt’s time, 30mins of Dr. Shapiro’s time, 2 further follow up phone calls of 40mins each to Matt and about 40 hours of research to go from 95% sure to 100% sure! Also, when I learned that Dr. Ron has performed more HT surgeries on HT surgeons themselves than any other surgeon out there I knew he had to be very good. To read the continuation go to the below “WHAT CRITERIA WHEN CHOOSING A HT SURGEON”. C – SHAPIRO MEDICAL GROUP. SMG all round were absolutely fantastic. There is so much you can read about them on this forum that I won’t be repetitive but all round I couldn’t have asked for anything more. In brief… I got in at 8am and left at 6pm, and I promise you all that I actually had an enjoyable day. I got drugged up on valium, didn’t feel the slightest pain whatsoever (apart from the forehead numbing shots which were about 5 or 6 3seconds long very sharp pains), watched TV and chatted with everyone there. They really looked after me and made me feel very well taken care of. Dr. Ron was calm and I never felt rushed at any point. He even stayed an hour longer to do some final touch ups. For everyone reading this, SMG deserve pages and pages of credit, and all I can tell you is that I never in my wildest dreams (and hours and hours of research) expected things to go as smoothly as it did on the day. That night I even had dinner with no pain at all. The only discomfort came on days 5-12 after as my donor scar healed. I never needed pain medication. I suppose it was a bit like having a slight ear ache. You can get on just fine with your day but its bothersome. D – THANKS TO… OK not to sound like I’m receiving an Oscar… Matt (the patient care director) was amazing. How he always listened to my questions and never made me feel crazy for asking them (there were a lot of questions). Dr. Ron Shapiro, is an absolute gentleman/perfectionist/professional. He has a very calming persona and you just feel when you are with him that everything is right. Janna, was also amazing and helped me so much on the day and did a great job placing the grafts. Her after care follow up emails have been amazing too! All the technicians (I think I had 10 cutting my grafts) were really nice and chatty and did a great job all round. I also want to thank very much HAL and ORLHAIR1 for all their posts. It made my decision making a lot easier and I really enjoyed following their stories! PART 2 – LESSONS LEARNT. A – MY THOUGHTS ON THE COALITION LIST AND THIS WEBSITE. This topic is a little more controversial. Let me first start by saying that this website offers A LOT!! Actually you can pretty much answer any questions and determine whether you are right, or whether you really want a HT entirely from this site alone so long as you use it properly and put the hours in. Although, there is some self promoting, and some propaganda. If something smells fishy, it probably is. The good thing is there a lot of users who will be quick to point out that a surgeon’s reviews sound a little too good to be true. The only issue I have is with the coalition list. I think users have to keep in mind why doctors are on the coalition list. They are there because they meet some requirements and pay the fees. Therefore there are plenty of good HT doctors who are not on the coalition list and some lousy ones that are! I know this is going to open a whole can of worms, but I don’t make this bold statement lightly. I make it from experience. One HT surgeon (the first doctor I saw) absolutely refused to sell himself online because he argues that his reputation and results don’t need it. He is a top surgeon (some would say the best there is) and probably my number 2 choice. (yes it’s his fault and not the fault of the coalition list that he is not on it but just know where you stand with this list). The second surgeon I saw (who is on the list and gets a lot of positive coverage on this web site) really shouldn’t be considered a top HT surgeon by any means whatsoever. It’s as simple as that and I won’t go into any more details. Now if I was to reveal this doctor's name (which I won't) a lot of people on this forum would be furious with me, as I am sure some of you out there think this guy is the best in the world. If I had gone to him and had a great experience and perfect results I would be describing him the exact same way.... But more importantly, if I had gone against my gut feeling, and the results were lousy, I would have always said to myself "I knew I should have listened to my intuition". So the point I am trying to make is go with a doctor you are 100% comfortable with, and if you can't find one keep on looking. There are lots and lots of doctors out there. Also one more point to add... If you hear a certain actor or sports personality or famous person has been somewhere, please don't give that place any more credibility. Do you honestly see Hollywood movie stars or sports personalities staying up late at night doing research on this forum?? Back to the coalition list… I consulted 3 HT surgeons… one is on the coalition list and deserves to be. One wasn’t and should have been. One was and shouldn’t have been. Therefore my accuracy ratio was 33%. Yes I sampled a very small amount of doctors relative to the whole list, but in my experience and in my opinion the coalition list is not the be all and end all! Think of the coalition list like OPEC’s representation of oil producing nations. A lot of the members of OPEC have a huge amount of influence on oil’s supply, but not all influential oil producing nations are members, and some relatively small nations are part of it. Saying all of this though, I don’t want to take anything away from this web site. If it wasn’t for its creation I would never have found Dr. Ron Shapiro, nor would I have had the necessary information to proceed with my surgery. So in conclusion, the coalition list is not the be all and end all, nor do the managers of this forum pretend it to be, and nor do the experienced users of this forum think it is. My message is directed towards those who haven’t yet discovered this for themselves. When I first discovered this web site I actually thought it was the be all and end all, and it took me a couple of months to realize on my own it wasn’t so consider this long winded chapter a catalyst in your thinking process… B – WHAT CRITERIA WHEN CHOOSING A HT SURGEON. Bottom line is you have to have a good gut feeling. I will go through my basic question list, but I think if you’re sitting in the chair having your questions answered before you have a chance to finish your sentence, or if you have a surgeon who rolls his eyes because you ask questions that are hard to answer like “what are my chances of shock loss” or “how much worse is my hair loss going to be if I do nothing” then you have to recognize that something isn’t right. This was my basic question list that I found on a piece of paper. I am sure I asked more at the time though as the conversation progressed… There are many other questions that probably should be asked, but this is most of what I wanted to know. In no particular order of importance… - How long would I need to hide for, post surgery? - Risk of shock loss? - FUE or FUT? - If it’s the right time for me to perform a procedure. - Whether I will need to shave my head prior to surgery. - Am I a good candidate to achieve my goals? I.e. Is there too much native hair in the way, and should I wait before deciding to do this? - Who will be doing the actual transplantations and who will make the actual incisions? - If FUT, how long will my scar be? - How long has the whole team worked together? - How many technicians? Are they employed full time? - Is there anyone I can physically meet who has had a procedure done by you? (This for me was very important). - How many grafts do I have in my donor area, i.e. how many HT surgeries can I have? - Have you ever had a result you considered disappointing? There are way more questions. Remember to ask absolutely everything. No question should be embarrassing to ask. Also, don’t let geographic distance and cost be an issue. If you can’t afford the best doctor you have found, then wait until you can. (Sorry if I offend some with this statement, but don’t let cost be an obstacle. If it is, then think again as you should only be going to who you think is the best. Remember that, not who I think, but who you think is the best.) If you can’t be bothered to get on a plane and fly for many hours to get it done, then you will only blame yourself if the closer, inferior doctor, doesn’t do a good job. Really give your decision all the financial and geographic flexibility you can possible afford. This is for life. C – THE PYSCHOLOGICAL CHALANGE. This was by far and away the hardest part of all for me. Getting my mind around the idea that I would be cutting an 18cm incision voluntarily into my head, or even the concept that as a man I am going for cosmetic surgery was seriously the hardest part. The worry, and the fear of all the scary things like shock loss, a visible scar, maybe having to go again one day in the future etc… all these things scared the sh1t out of me, and for about 6 months I went back and forth on my decision about 10 times. All I can say is you have to overcome these concerns on your own. Don’t let anyone tell you it will all be fine. Find out what needs to be done to minimize all the risks involved and go into the surgery knowing that they might still occur but you have done everything possible to prevent it happening, and if it does happen you have done everything possible to cope with it if it does. As far as I was concerned, I was not at the stage of going through with this until I had exhausted my limits to research. It was only at the point that I was truly looking forward to the surgery, and I was all round 100% positive for the day of my surgery and I was willing to accept any consequence that might arise, that I knew that I was ready. I hope for readers of this post your “eureka” moment comes quicker than it did for me, but I urge you to reach that point before going ahead. On that note don’t ask anyone who you are close to if you should do it or not. It doesn’t matter what advice you get, as the decision has to be 100% yours and no one else’s. For me the physiological barrier was by far and away the hardest part of all. But for me though, when I felt ready for my surgery, I went in with all guns blazing knowing 100% sure that I wanted this with all my heart. D – RESEARCH. This is pretty self explanatory… if you are serious about getting a HT, you have to research and research and still do more research. Don't delegate this someone else! There are a lot of lousy doctors out there and a lot of mis-information. Whatever you do, don’t read a post like mine describing the whole procedure as a breeze, and think that it will be the same for you too. My point is research as much as you can and know what the worst possible outcome is and what the day of surgery will involve. One last thing, go on your chosen doctor’s website and look at his or her results! If you can’t find many on their own sites, or the ones you can see you don’t find particularly good then that should be alarming. Also if you see members on this forum who are praising someone else’s results and you yourself don’t think they are very good, don’t question yourself as to whether you are missing something… mostly likely you are not and the results are simply not good… E – OPERATION ITSELF. I have said it earlier on, but it’s worth saying it again… The operation itself was no big deal at all. I had my girlfriend come with me, which really helped me get over my nerves before the surgery and keep an eye on me that night when I got back to the hotel. I recommend having someone with you if you can but its definitely not necessary. To be honest we both live busy lives and to have 9 solid hours together watching TV, eating Chinese food, chatting and having a laugh with all the technicians was actually a fun experience. The point I want to make is the operation itself (the pain, the inconvenience, the hassle of getting there etc…) should not be a factor in the decision making process. Yes maybe for me (and most people that go to SMG) it was a very easy operation and the only pain I experienced were the forehead injections that lasted about 3 seconds each and there were about 5 of them (not bad for 9 hours!) But the decision making process as to whether to go for a HT should not be focused on the actual surgery. Recovery time and potential consequences and the physiological barrier are way more important to focus on. F – TIME BEFORE GOING OUT INTO PUBLIC - GROW YOUR HAIR AS LONG AS POSSIBLE. Another one of my greatest concerns prior to surgery was how I would look after. I spent many hours trying to determine how long I would need to hide for. (keep in mind I only did my hairline so this may not apply for those doing megasessions). Well I didn’t cut my hair for 5 months prior to surgery. I would say the length of my hair is about 7-8 inches long. My theory was have it long for the surgery and if I can, cut it afterwards… you can’t exactly add it back on after. Well apart from looking a bit scruffy and like I was 18 years old again, it was the best decision I could have made. Two days later I was able to go out for dinner by flopping my hair forward with a centre parting that looked like I had curtains. This look disguised about 95% of all the grafts. Its looks a bit silly, but it enables me to go out care free. I think I should say though that someone who knows me really well, or someone who knows what post operative patients look like would have been able to look at my central hairline (between the curtains) and been able to tell I had done something. I spent parts of the first week out and about… 3 dinners out, my long flight home, an outdoor lunch etc and as people spoke to me I watched their eyes to see if they would look at my front hair line. I only caught one person doing it. After 8 days when all the scabs and ink were gone I didn’t have any fears of people noticing. As for the scar in the back, it’s impossible to see with such long hair. Even on a windy day, 48 hours after surgery I asked my girlfriend to stare at the back of my head and see if could see the reflection of the staples and she couldn’t. Having long hair has helped me a huge amount. G – THINGS YOU SHOULD BUY FOR YOURSELF PRIOR TO SURGERY. - An in shower shaving mirror. I never found anyone here recommending this and I am probably the first… the first week of shampooing is a bit challenging. You have to gently pat the shampoo onto your grafts. As its important to clean all the grafts well on a daily basis, I would physically have get out of the shower every day and stand in front of the mirror making sure I did this right. Of course I would make an absolute mess in the bathroom, so an in shower shaving mirror would have really helped. - A travel neck pillow. Lots of people mentioned it and I went out and bought one and it really helped. Mostly for sitting up in bed while reading or watching TV as it cushions the suture line. - Lots of ice gel packs. For the first 3 days it was very soothing to have an ice pack on my sutures and forehead. - A small empty spray bottle. To better describe this… when you go to a pharmacy and they sell those small (less than 100ml) see through bottles so that you can carry your liquids in your carry on luggage, usually you will see next to it a similar looking thing with a spray top on it. For the first few days (at least with Dr. Shapiro) you have to spray your grafts with grafcyte every 30mins. (It's actually not as inconvenient as it sounds. Set your cell phone snooze delay interval to 30mins, set your alarm, and keep on “snoozing” all day long.) Well as the grafcyte bottle is about half a liter big, it helped me a lot to go out with a miniature version in my pocket, rather than lugging that massive thing around. - A loose fitting cap. Yes you all know about this already, but don’t go trying on your loose fitting cap for the first time post surgery as pressure on the suture line really hurts if you get it wrong. H – INCONVINIANCES AFTER SURGERY. Best to list these in bullet form… - After day 5 my suture line became bothersome. It did make me lose sleep, but not terribly. You can’t really get comfortable lying on your back in bed. You find throughout the day you get a random tingling sensations, followed but a small thud of pain. It’s like the nerve endings are all firing off randomly. Nothing bad enough that I had to take meds but it was an inconvenience. This all stopped when the staples were removed. - Forehead swelling. I was warned about this so fully expected it. Day 2 it appeared. It was its worst on days 3 and 4. By day 7 it was gone. Basically my whole forehead swelled up (despite lots of forehead icing). I noticed it most in front of the side burns. Also you don’t get any wrinkles when you frown. There is a bit of jaw pain, and also your cap will feel a little bit tighter. No big deal but something to note. - The whole 2 week shower procedure is a bit tricky but again if you are aware of it prior to surgery then it won’t be a big deal when you have to do it. I – OTHERS THINGS. - The staples came out on day 12 and it was much more comfortable after that. - I came down with a severe (the worst I have ever had) case of strep throat on day 10 and started Amoxicillin. From all the research I did, from consulting with SMG and from this forum, there are no antibiotics that will affect the outcome of your procedure. - I started shedding my new hairs on day 10, and it was heavier and heavier every day. - Sorry for not posting photos. When I am 6 months out I might put some up and let you know how I am getting on I think the main message I wanted to get across is all above. So that’s about it as far as all my notes and thoughts that I have gathered and the many lessons I have learnt. I have passed on absolutely everything I possibly could from my experience and I really hope this helps a few people out there. It certainly would have helped me a lot had I read this 10 months ago. Good luck to everyone out there and feel free to ask me anything you want. Even if you want hotel advice in Minneapolis. I may not be that quick in responding though. Lastly, thanks to everyone for all their input on this forum and for the creators of this forum. Without it I would never have gone through with my decision.
  12. Hi, all. I haven’t posted here much since my last procedure in 2015, but happy to share an update with everyone about my latest surgery. As background, I had my first transplant with Dr. Robert Niedbalski in June 2012. I was a NW 2-3, and he transplanted 1,450 grafts via strip to form a lower, but still recessed, hairline. I wanted a flat hairline, so I had a subsequent procedure with Dr. Rahal in October 2015, when he transplanted 2,200 grafts, again via strip. The hairline design was great, but the right side grew in a little sparse. Nothing awful, and I could’ve gone without addressing it, but I wanted to go back to the well for a fuller hairline. I just turned 36, BTW. I've been on Avodart and Propecia for six years and essentially no longer lose hair--my loss is fully halted. I use Rogaine but discontinued before surgery per instructions. Links to thread about my earlier procedures are here: https://www.hairtransplantnetwork.com/blog/home-page.asp?WebID=2858 So, last week I drove from Seattle down to Portland for a third procedure--this time with Steve Gable. I’ve known Dr. Gabel for about five years and have really looked forward to working with him. He’s a precise, thoughtful guy, and I knew he’d be a great choice to refine my results. I left Seattle at 3am to check in at Dr. G’s clinic at 6:30. His clinic just moved to a brand-new facility, and it’s gorgeous--two ORs, a lovely lobby, and overall just a great, clean, attractive space. We sat down and discussed hairline approach, and agreed that we weren’t going to lower the hairline. I didn’t need it, and lowering it even a few millimeters would mean that I’d need to get in again to spruce up the density, and I wanted to be done. (My hair is still very dense and I want the hairline to match, so I don’t want to get stuck in a loop of chasing density in an ever-lower hairline.) We agreed 1,000 more grafts across the hairline--and concentrated in the right side--would do the trick. The procedure was very smooth. Strip excision took about 30-45 minutes and I didn’t feel any pain. Dr. G excised part of my prior scar, which ran from just inside left ear to above my right ear. He didn’t need to run all the way from end-to-end on the scar. He closed the strip with staples, which I hadn’t had before; he thought they’d do a better job at holding the tension and has had good luck with them recently. Once the wound was closed, he did the incisions--nothing eventful, and nothing painful. I didn’t bother to watch TV, but just spent the time chatting with Dr. G and his techs. If you haven’t met him, he’s a really personable, chatty guy, which was engaging during surgery. I had a Valium before surgery but didn’t feel it much, which was fine; I’m not the anxious type and was perfectly relaxed during surgery. I seemed more comfortable than my previous surgeries, but that’s probably due in part to the fact that it was fewer grafts so the sit was shorter. When we got to placing grafts, I’d estimate that Dr. G placed about 50%. He places grafts in all his procedures, and I was his only patient that day, so there wasn’t any need for him to pop out and attend to someone else. If you haven’t gone through a transplant before, it’s really disconcerting when you feel like a surgeon disengages from the procedure once the incisions are made and just turns everything over to the techs. Dr. G was omnipresent and was in the room for virtually the whole procedure. That’s not the norm. Of my three procedures, this was the smoothest and easiest. That’s no knock on Niedbalski or Rahal, but a huge compliment to Dr. G and his staff. The post-op materials were first-rate and included a calendar specialized for my surgery date so I didn’t have to count post-surgery days. That’s a nice touch that I hadn’t seen before. The recipient area was also very clean--virtually no blood or scabbing. They carefully washed it the next day and showed me how to shampoo. Great post-op hand-holding all the way, and Dr. G responded to an email same-day later in the week. Pictures are below, and obviously there’s not much to report in terms of growth. My scabs are falling off, but the recipient area is hardly noticeable because although it was shaved, I’m combing my hair forward. Hard to cover up the staples, but they’ll be out in another week. I’m definitely experiencing a lot of tightness in my donor area given that it’s been excised three times, so I’m trying especially hard to keep my head tipped back to keep tension off the scar. I’m a little concerned about a widened scar given that it’s my third strip, but I’ll keep everyone posted as that progresses. Please fire away with questions/comments; I’ll be checking in every day. Thanks! When reviewing pics, please keep in mind that the after pictures are both immediately post-op and then the next day; my hair is wet in both. Remember that the transplanted area contained both native hair AND previously transplanted hair, so the density will be much, much higher than the number of grafts you can see.
  13. 2342 ultra-refined FUs transplanted to recontour frontal frame and add internal density. 728 singles, 1569 doubles, 45 threes. PRP administered intraoperatively.
  14. In 2017, I travelled to Madrid and underwent an FUE hair transplant with Dr Lorenzo. A year has passed and I wanted to document my progress and help guide anyone else considering the Injertocapilar Clinic, or an FUE transplant in general. — I never knew I was losing my hair until it was too late. My rate of hair loss was gradual. There were no hairs on my pillow or in the plughole. Since I had a high hairline, I failed to properly recognize the degree of recession that was occurring. However, by my mid-thirties, my hair loss was becoming noticeable and I was not entirely happy with my appearance. Sometime around 2015, a friend took some photographs of my scalp and I was shocked to find that I was sporting the kind of thinning hair that I imagined I might have as an old man. 

 My hairline was high up on my head and my crown had started to open up. As a spunky guy in my mid-thirties, I was not ready to have an aged man's head on my body. After some months of quiet anguish, I decided to do something radical and shave my head. This was surprisingly liberating. For the first time, I had control over my hair, rather than the other way round. As soon as I let the clippers do their work, I was no longer at the mercy to the whims of my scalp. I wish I had done this sooner. Hence, I’d recommend that anyone considering a hair transplant shaves their head first. Shaving is a big step to take in its own right. However, I immediately discovered that when there’s no hair on your head there’s no problem to deal with! 

A shaved head can also look (very) cool but you won’t know until you do it. Give it a try. I rocked the shaved head-look for over a year. However, I eventually decided to opt for a hair transplant: whilst I was confident with my new appearance, I wanted to recognise my face looking back in the mirror, rather than the physiognomy of a baby-faced Jason Stratham. 
I had my reasons. Several years ago, I had made it a personal mission to restore my youthfulness and vitality. My body was starting to pick up the aches and pains associated with ageing and living a sedentary lifestyle. However, I was able to turn the clock back, with a regime of calisthenics and an improved diet. I figured it would also be fun for my hair to also follow suit. Besides, I reasoned that if the transplant didn’t match my expectations, I could simply revert back to shaving my head and wearing the hell out of a suit. In this way, shaving my head actually helped me take the decision to get a transplant in the most positive of ways. Who knew? I began researching the various online forums (including this one) for suggestions on where to find a great doctor. I kept my time on the forums brief but eventually, I narrowed my search down to what I objectively considered, the top three hair surgeons. They were: 
1. Dr Feriduni (Belgium) 
 2. Dr Rahal (Canada) 3. Dr Lorenzo (Spain) I contacted each of their clinics and made online enquiries. I sent in photos of my hair and corresponded with their respective staff. Spex, who represents Dr Ferudini, was particularly helpful.

 However, Dr Lorenzo contacted me personally (on Christmas Day, no less). I appreciated this personal touch, his frank feedback and the breadth of his portfolio of work. 

 Many before me considered him the greatest hair surgeon on the planet. I figured that if I was going to get this procedure done, I’d opt for the best of the best. With a mixture of gut instinct and mental deduction, I chose Dr Lorenzo. (NB. There was not much difference in quotes given by all three. I paid in several instalments and I believe the total was around 12-13K Euros) It is a big decision to fly to another country and undergo a hair procedure. Personally, numerous objections in my mind came up, such as: ‘You’re already happy, surely this hair procedure only serves your ego?’ ‘The procedure is expensive, wouldn’t you rather spend that on a holiday?’ ‘Do you want to be taking Finasteride for the rest of your life?’ I decided I have a whole lifetime to make more money and that getting a hair procedure was more to do something good and nice for myself. However, the thought of taking meds every day, admittedly, held me back.
 I view my body as my greatest asset in life and I didn’t want to be dependent on ‘popping pills’ for my cosmetic appearance. However, after researching Finasteride, I deduced that any negative side effects were pretty much short-term and fully reversible. (I read the horror stories out there too but I calculated, statistically, the risk-to-reward ratio very favourable toward a positive outcome. I'm geeky like that.) I sourced the Finasteride online (www.hairlossexperiencesshop.co.uk), which came as 5mg tablets that I divided into five smaller bits and took every day. After several months, I had happily encountered no ill effects. At this point, I decided to contact the clinic and book the procedure with Dr Lorenzo. There was a 10-month waiting list, which was frustrating in the face of my impatience but the time quickly flew by. Before I knew it, I was on an economy plane seat to Madrid. I enjoyed the city, which has a great cultural vibe and is easy to explore, via the metro system. I stayed at a nearby hotel arranged by the clinic. I met Dr Lorenzo, who speaks perfect English, for a consultation several days before my procedure.
 We had conversed online and his personal assessment was that my temporal peaks and hair line would need completely rebuilding. I also had a small gap appearing on my crown that could be filled. On close inspection of my scalp, Dr Lorenzo also noted that my donor area was excellent (hair, I think, was 53 microns) and suggested a transplant consisting of 3,500 grafts. (NB. I didn't appreciate at the time that one graft can have several hairs, so the amount of hair that was to be transplanted was much more than 3,500...) During my consultation, I asked lots of questions that I had written down and he candidly answered every one. His focus throughout my consultation was the pinnacle of professionalism and this put me instantly at ease. I left his office feeling that I was in very safe hands.
 On the day of the procedure, I arrived at the clinic very early. 
 I met Grace, a nurse from the UK who now works with Lorenzo. Grace would be on hand over the next two days to talk me through what was happening. I changed into scrubs and was given a valium. My heart rate was also taken. My head was shaved and I was asked where I would like my new hairline to be! I decided to let Dr Lorenzo draw the line on. After all, I figured he’s done this a lot more times with a pen than I have. Just as the valium started kicking in, I was lead to the room where the procedure would take place.

 Let's fast forward. What does having a hair extraction feel like?

 Well, the short answer is that it feels like having your head pricked with a cocktail stick around 1,500 times!
 The procedure began with me laying comfortably on my side whilst I let the anaesthesia take effect. Dr Lorenzo oversaw the extraction team as they began removing my hairs. He performed several extractions himself and guided the team, as required. I listened to music and even fell asleep several times. Occasionally, I’d feel an extraction, which felt like being jabbed with a sharp stick. More pain relief was promptly given. This procedure went on for about four hours. With everything considered, the whole process was actually not too bad: about as uncomfortable as flying on a budget airline plane seat for a long haul. Bearable, not terrible...with much a better lunch. After all the extractions had taken place for the day (1,500 in total) I stretched out and ate some lunch in the kitchen area of the clinic. I chatted with the extraction team and Grace, who was on hand to assist. Everyone at the clinic was very friendly. 

After a short break, it was time for my extracted hair to be implanted. What does having a hair transplant feel like?

 Again, it feels like having your head pricked with a cocktail stick...a further 1,500 times!
 Dr Lorenzo, with a Jedi-like focus, began the procedure of implanting my extracted hairs. I am usually a very chatty guy but, in this case, I had the sense not to interrupt him as he entered a flow state of concentration. It was at this moment I was supremely glad I had chosen a true expert to perform this intimate type of work –and not got it done on the cheap in a less developed country. With hindsight, I would definitely recommend a 'saving n' shaving' approach when selecting a doctor: it is worth it. Dr Lorenzo is clearly an artist as well as a surgeon and I sensed that he really took care to make sure every hair was inserted at just the right angle in just the right place. One by one he added hairs to my scalp. I listened to music and dozed off a few times. After several hours, we were done for the first day. I looked in the mirror and, for the first time in almost two decades, saw that I had hair again! It was an emotional moment to see how my entire image was being transformed. However, at this stage, my image was more akin to a whimsical Harvey Dent than a handsome Bruce Wayne: there were two distinct sides to my face: one side with hair, one without.

 Before departing the clinic for the day, I was given careful, simple instructions on how to look after my freshly transplanted hairs and driven back to my hotel. This mostly involved spraying my head with a saline solution to keep it wet. 

Despite having a head like a hairy Swiss cheese, I had a pleasant night’s sleep. I awoke the next day with light trepidation: the sleepy thought of being pricked another 3,500 times was a little disconcerting. 
Then I remembered how awesome the prospect of having hair was, which dispelled the negative feelings. At that moment, the hotel shuttle whisked me to the clinic. I arrived, met the staff and the work continued. I was prepped in the same way as the previous day, and the procedure was repeated. Poke, poke, poke! The time passed slowly. However, by the end of the day, I had hair. Bruce Wayne achievement: unlocked! My head was a smattering of red dots but the hardest part was done. That night, I slept carefully in my bed, using a pillow provided by the clinic and, again, spraying my head every few hours with the saline solution. I also took some vitamin D3 to help assist in the healing process. Before heading home the next day, I attended the clinic for an assessment and a debrief. For those interested, here are some stats from the surgery: 
Extractable Grafts: 6,924
 Actual Grafts Used: 3,501 Overall Hairs Extracted: 8,477 Total Hairs Used: 42.8% Hair/graft ratio: 2.42 Temporal: 300 grafts (2.25 hair/ graft) Parietal: 1,451 (2.41 hair/ graft) Occipital: 1,750 (2.46 hair/ graft) Single: 353 Double: 1,488 Triple: 1,497
 Quadruple: 159 Quintuple: 4 
Sextuple: 0

 The procedure had been a success and now the task was up to me to keep my head protected to ensure the optimal conditions for all the transplanted hair to grow and the donor site to heal. 
 Apparently, it takes nine days for the transplanted hairs to completely take root in their new locations. Dr Lorenzo suggested this happens even more quickly but I fixed my sights on keeping free of any potential stress for the next nine days. The initial days following the operation were quite challenging in ways I had not anticipated. My head swelled up for a few days due to the lingering aesthetic in my system. I looked like Thanos’ nephew. Happily, the comical swelling subsided and was then replaced with a bigger challenge.

 The donor area was covered in thousands of little scabs that became incredibly itchy. Of course, I was under strict instructions not to scratch. I can imagine the greatest feeling in the world would have been to have scratched those itchy bits…but…I resisted!

 However, the itchiness was so severe it descended into a mixture of pain and mental despair. It kept me awake for several days and was far more challenging than the transplant itself. Eventually, I found relief by applying cold aloe vera gel (kept in the refrigerator) to the affected area of my head, which significantly eased the sensation. After a few days, the itchy condition passed and my sanity returned. After a few weeks, with the redness of scalp starting to fade, I could enjoy my newly transplanted hair. It even started to grow! Although short, it felt great to have my hairline restored to my younger self. 
During this journey, I made a point to tell almost everyone about what I was doing. I decided that trying to hide the obvious is the same thinking that leads to comb-overs. 

 Lots of my friends were really interested in the procedure and everyone was supportive. Curiously, I think the question I got asked the most was “…how much did it cost?” After a few weeks, my transplanted hair began to fall out as I entered the so-called ‘ugly duckling’ phase. I guess no patient likes to see their new hair vanish, even temporarily, so, at this point, I decided to skip the drama and keep my hair super short, returning to my former Jason Stratham look for the next few months. However, this time around, I wasn’t able to use clippers (you have to wait five months) but I got by cutting my hair with scissors. Short hair made the process of dealing with the changes happening on my head much more manageable. However, as soon as I cut my hair short for the first time, post-op, I made a positive discovery. –There was no scarring in my donor area! I had assumed that all the hairs taken from the donor site would leave little-pitted scars. I had seen such pictures, online, of other FUE patients and accepted this as par for the course. However, I had no scarring at all. My skin was smooth. I suspect this is because of the extraction technique used and the skill of the extraction team. I was a very happy client indeed and extremely happy I opted for Dr Lorenzo and Injectocappilar. Life then continued as normal. After five months I returned to the clinic for a checkup with Dr Lorenzo. I must say he really is a perfectionist and took the time to look closely at my hair and its progress. By five months my hair was beginning to thicken. There was some concern about the density around my temporal peaks. The hair in this area was a little thinner. Dr Lorenzo concluded that we must wait another five months to see how the hair will progress. Six months after the procedure I began to let my new hair grow properly. As the hair grew thicker and it was an amazing feeling to look in the mirror and see the same style of hair on my head that I had, fifteen years prior. After ten months, I returned to see Dr Lorenzo for a second, and final, check-up. The hair had thickened considerably during this interlude. He was very happy with the overall outcome. He suggested that we could put in 50-250 more hairs in the peaks down the line to thicken them up a little more. This is something I may consider, but it's not really an issue for me at present. What does transplanted hair look and feel like? 
Well, ten months after the procedure, the hair feels exactly like normal hair. It has all the same sensations when you brush or comb it. Running your fingers through your new hairline feels like it has always been there. The sensitivity of the scalp is identical to before the procedure. My new hair covers my head perfectly. I now have a hairline and temporal peaks that frame my face very nicely. The patch in the crown of my head has been completely filled, too. 
Dr. Lorenzo really stretched those 3,500 grafts well. The density of the transplanted hair at the front is not as thick as my original hair. However, it is pretty thick and from months six to ten (present) the thickness of my hair continues to increase. I’m not sure how it will change looking ahead.
 The transplanted hair is slightly darker than the rest of the hair on my head. It blends in perfectly well but I was curious about it. Dr Lorenzo explained that this is because the hair is strong. 
The transplanted hair has a slight curl to it. I was informed that this is because the hair is new. As it matures it will resemble the hair on the rest of my scalp. Even if the hair remained curly it would not be an issue.

 The donor area appears as thick as before I had the procedure. Upon inspection, it looks as if no hair was actually taken. I wondered if the hair around this area would be thinner but I can’t detect any change. It seems almost like magic. Dr Lorenzo takes the approach of using transplanted hair sparingly. He’s keen to not exhaust the donor area, whilst maximising coverage. I appreciated his approach in this respect. I learned I have about 21,000 hairs (not grafts!) remaining in the donor area for any future work. Although I made an effort to tell as many people about my procedure as possible it has been quite fun to meet old acquaintances who didn’t know that I was getting an FUE procedure. 

In every case they look at me, with slight befuddlement, and say things like: “...you look younger” or “...there’s something different about you!” These comments are always positive and some even have expressed an interested in having a transplant themselves. When I look in the mirror now, I now see myself looking back. It's fantastic not to have to worry about my hair anymore. It’s almost easy to forget I ever had issues with it falling out. The days of hair-woe now seem long ago, and I have no fear of them returning. Do you ever wish you could turn back time knowing what you know now? Well, I feel like I am twenty years old again, with all the smarts of a thirty-five-year-old! It’s a great feeling! This is, by far, the best money I have ever spent. I see it as an investment in myself. Looking forward, I am keen to see how my hair matures. I am delighted that I now have hair that I can style (although I probably won’t be using hair straighteners as much this time!) 

Recently, I even got a bad haircut from a dodgy barber, which I now consider a high-quality problem! Overall, I am a supremely happy client and highly recommend Dr Lorenzo and his team. I have gone from having a receding hairline to having hair. The difference feels like night and day! The level of care and attention he showed throughout my procedure was exemplary. Both He and Grace have been on hand and available to help with questions after the procedure. Like many others, I believe he is the best hair surgeon in the world. I’m writing this review on my own accord and as a sheer expression of my contentedness. I hope this gives you an overview of working with Dr Lorenzo or any other FUE professional. These opinions are all my own, so please do your research! If you have any questions, please ask below! I’ll do my best to answer them. I will check back into this thread every few months over the course of the next year.
  15. I'd like to add to the wealth of knowledge about Dr. Diep since it seems he has many reviews here that are mostly positive. The jury is still out on this one, but I have high hopes so far. I am 33 years old and paid ~16k total for this FUE procedure and it was booked about 9 months in advance. I *almost* backed out a few days before after reading some scary reviews on realself and after hearing Dr. Diep's reputation for using a large punch size, but I went ahead anyway since he had a solid reputation on this forum. I've always had a high hairline since I can remember (I recall a girl calling me out for a receding hairline when I was 16), but I don't think I actually had noticeable miniaturization occurring until about 27. My father is nearly completely bald, and my brother's hair (who is about 7 years old) has progressive hairloss that is a bit worse than mine. I would say that for most men my age that are suffering from pattern baldness, mine is relatively milder (likely due to my early attempts at treatment). Some might say I am crazy for getting FUE at this stage of hairloss, but it is bothering me enough and it is difficult to style the hair the way I want (I have a huge forehead so I generally wear it down and to the side). My hair is currently receding in the temple areas a few inches and I believe it is starting to thin in the crown area as well. Here is where my hair currently is: You can kind of see on the right side of the picture of my temple area where I think the hairline used to be - one sole surviving hair seems to be nice and thick still. As far as treatments go, I probably have propecia and keto use for the last 4 years or so to thank for the relatively minor hairloss I have (compared to my brother at least). I hadsides when I started propecia, so I experimented with dosage and and also used grape seed extract as a way to counteract the effects (I forgot the mechanism involved but I read about it a long time ago and it seemed to work). I landed on taking approximately .5 mg every 3 days. Any more often and I start to get foggy brain. I sometimes try to increase it to EoD but I just can't do it because the brain fog messes with my job performance. Anyway, on to the stuff you guys probably care about. I initially paid for 1750, but Dr. Diep convinced me it would be a good idea to at least give him an allowance of an extra 100 based on the line he drew to restore my hairline. I also went with the A-cell - cost wasn't that huge of an issue for me and there didn't seem to be any drawbacks other than extra cost: This was exactly what I was looking for - even though I was tempted to lower my hairline a bit since my forehead is so large, I decided ahead of time that I should keep it conservative and simply restore what I had previously. I didn't want to deplete all my donor hair in case I needed more in the future. I also wanted to avoid possibly having an artificial looking hairline by at least having native hair closer to blend in with the implanted hair. I've seen Diep do magic with hairline lowering, but I've also seen some less than stellar results so I didn't want to take any chances. The half a CM or so that it appears to be lowering is simply because you can't really see the few straggler hairs that had not yet receded. As far as how the procedure went, it was fairly typical as others on this forum have described. The Dr. was already working with a patient when I arrived at 7:30, and he told me that he would be done with that patient in the early AM and would be with me for the rest of the day (that turned out to be not really true - once he finished making the recipient incisions, he only came and checked on the technicians performing the implants every now and then). I was given a concoction of pills and then waited about an hour and a half before the doctor came to begin the extractions (around 9:30-10). I did not fall asleep like most others describe but I was fairly relaxed. I experienced some pain from the anesthetic injections, and also had some pain during some of the FUE extractions in a particular area, and I recall him giving additional anesthetic injections for that. I don't know what size punch he used, but he indicated during pre-op that he used between .9 and 1mm - he explained his reasons for the larger punch and while I am aware I could have insisted on a smaller punch, his results speak for themselves and I think its best to let the doctor do things his way. Many of the criticisms I've read thus far regarding the punch size have been focused on how the donor area looked just after the procedure, but I haven't seen any real criticisms of his donor areas in the long term - and I also had not read of donor reserves being unusable as a result. The FUE extractions came from the back and my right side, as seems to be common with Dr. Diep (and debated about in other threads). I think the jury is still out as to whether this should really be done, but I can say that the left side of my donor area is well preserved for any future need, though I am not sure I like how far near the right ear he went with the extractions. That said, I will generally not be buzzing my hair very short anyway (5 guard minimum) so I don't think this will be an issue for me - you can see from the photos how I generally wear my hear. He made sure to minimize any shaving of hair at my hairline since I plan to return to work after 3 weeks and I am hoping (though I am skeptical) to disguise the work with a mixture of clever styling, makeup, topik, etc. One criticism I had about this procedure is once the extractions/incisions were done and lunch was provided, I asked for another round of sedatives (xanex/valium) since what I had so far wasn't really doing the trick and I had much more time to remain in the chair. I wasn't provided that - I am not sure why. The second half of the procedure was fairly uncomfortable - I was generally conscious and could feel each insertion of graft (though no pain from it initially). The inability to move at all due to the inserting of grafts, combined with the very chatty techs who were talking/laughing very loudly inches from my ear talking about all sorts of things (strip clubs, dating, etc), and the lack of any sedative effect, made for a very uncomfortable 6 hour process. I believe they started inserting the grafts around 2pm, and when 5 rolled around or so and I was basically wide awake, I asked how much longer it would be, and I was told 2 hours. Well, 2 hours rolled by and I asked again how much longer, and I was told 30 minutes. The anesthetic had mostly worn off and I was starting to feel pain/pressure and decided to just power through it (they asked if I wanted the Dr. to come apply more anesthetic but I declined since they were almost done, I thought). But it took another hour and a half and everyone from the office was pretty much gone except the technicians and the doctor. The post-op instruction lady came in and decided to give me my post op instructions and sign it while I was still laying on the chair and getting grafts placed, which I thought was kind of odd (do you think I am going to remember this well while I am getting stuck with grafts?) I understand that things happen and just sometimes take longer, but I couldn't help but feel like there was a sense of being rushed at the end (techs complaining about being hungry and what not). By the time things were wrapping up, I was asking for the painkillers prescribed to try and get ahead of the pain that I could feel coming on. The painkillers they gave me did not seem to have any effect on me (Tramadol) so my girlfriend and I drove straight to the pharmacy, and wouldn't you know everything was closed by 10pm, and the one 24 hour pharmacy was out of percocet. Most people describe the post-op pain as being relatively minor but I was experiencing the worst head pressure/pain I had ever felt. I ended up quickly glancing through the post-op instructions and seeing something about how ibuprofen can be taken 4 days post-op and in my pain and dizzyness from the valium, believed that meant I could take ibuprofen and took 3 (turns out I wasn't supposed to do that because of the blood thinning effect). While his written instructions, if you actually parse out the language, say that you can take ibuprofen after the 4th day, it is very easy to misread the instructions if you are in a daze from the sedatives and in a lot of pain. I was mildly annoyed because my girlfriend had been in the waiting room since 4 pm and could have picked up the prescriptions for me as I had asked (but they declined to let her because they said they already had painkillers for me). A word about the post-op instruction packets - I also don't understand why there are two different sets of post-op instruction packets which address the same issues and in some cases are contradictory (one set of instructions are telling you how to clean the recipient area each day after surgery but the second set clearly says you should *not* touch the recipient area until day 4). Dr. Diep was very pleasant during the pre-op but I didn't talk with him much after the procedure. I believe he came in to check on the technicians about once every 30-45 minutes during the insertion of the grafts and to take final photos. I went to my first post-op wash and was hoping to get a rundown of how he felt about the procedure, but he was too busy when I was there, so I am hoping to catch him in one of the other cleanings if possible. Anyway, here is the stuff you guys probably care about: Other than taking ibuprofen after the surgery, everything seems to be normal. Once I woke up, i was no longer in pain and haven't really felt anything yet. The doctor told me the ibuprofen won't have any effect on the graft survival, it can just cause excessive bleeding from the donor area (doesn't seem to be a huge issue at the moment). I also apparently misinterpreted the pre-op instructions regarding smoking - the warning made specific reference to the dangers of nicotine - so I assumed that smoking marijuana was still OK (I used marijuana semi-regularly 1-2 times/week), and had smoked it 4 days prior to the surgery. Dr. Diep didn't like that but said it should be fine, but advised me to refrain from any marijuana use for an "entire year" ?!?!. From what I've been reading, it seems that the general MO is to refrain from smoking anything for a month or so, but after that I can resume. Cannabis has been show to inhibit growth of hair generally from what secondary sources I've read, but it doesn't appear from anything I could find that would cause the failing of hair grafts once the grafts are fully healed. If anyone has better information they could chime in? Anyway, thanks for listening. Any tips to disguise the hair implant would be greatly appreciated - I can't wear a hat as I work in a courtroom so its very important to look professional. I might also just need to fess up and tell everyone why I took a 3 week vacay - but we''ll see. Thanks for listening.
  16. It's hard to really know if it helps or not. Weather you use it or not, how can you really know 6 months later if your hair would have grown the same or not. I know True & Dorin recommend it and they charge about $150 for it. My personal opinion is if the Dr. thinks it will help then it's worth a few dollars more to use it and not wonder whether or not you're doing the best that you can for your transplanted hair.
  17. Wow. This is exactly what I was looking for. Dr. True or Dr. Dorin are even a couple of the surgeons I'm considering! Keep it coming, folks. Thank you so much!
  18. Hi Folks, It took me long to post this similar to what it took me to decide for going for my HT 😊 Well in order for me to take you through my journey allow me to explicate it in phases……. About me: Indian by Nationality, currently 34 years of age, an individual highly cautious for his health and overall wellbeing. Hard working and quite disciplined in maintaining a decent lifestyle. Somewhat introvert in nature though can’t say completely. My Hair-loss story: I had thick dense curly hairs since my childhood. The bad phase of my hairs started when the good phase of my career started. I came to Dubai at the age of 24 post completion of my education MBA (Marketing). I got recruited in a MNC and was eager to achieve a lot. And like they say that all things come with a price tag, may be my precious hairs were the price of my professional achievements. It was around 3-4 years down the line since I started to realize that something is not going well with my hairs as I started noticing a lot of hairfall. As I told you I am very health cautious, I immediately tried to research/apply all possible ways and means to combat this hairfall, from hair oils to herbs, to supplements, to yoga, to fruits/ healthy diet, from homeopathy to allopathy to Ayurveda, what and what not…… You name it and I might have done it all to preserve my hairs. BUT……All in despair. Nothing seemed to have been affecting much. It was getting worse day by day and I had started to use hair fibers in order to conceal my agony. It had been 10 years since I was continuously battling and that was when I regained all my strength and decided that it’s time for me to get a HT done. My Hair Transplant story: Post making up my mind for HT, the most difficult step was to finalize a doctor/surgeon. Pause here…..when I say a doctor, I don’t just mean a doctor……I needed someone as good as the creator himself. My expectations were really sky high when it came to choosing someone for rectification of my devastated felicity, MY PRECIOUS HAIRS……. It seemed almost impossible to satisfy my expectation but I was determined….I visited numerous clinics, met multiple doctors/surgeons, continued with my routine online investigations and also got inclined towards couple of doctors though not fully satisfied. Then I remembered and approached one of my cousins whom I consider an encyclopedia. I reached out to him for assistance in my search. It took him few weeks before he could get back to me with certain recommendations. The final decision was obviously mine and I started conversing with the finalized ones. It was no later than my first conversation with Dr. Tejinder Bhatti, I was convinced that HE IS THE ONE……..He saw my pics and gave me an estimation of 3000 grafts (approx.). It was not the number of grafts which would have mattered to me nor the financial aspect. I could sense his expertise in his approach. We hardly had a couple of calls and exchange of may be couple of mails and I decided to get my HT done from him. Journey to Darling Buds Hair Transplant Clinic: 12th Jan 2018 was when I got my HT done from Dr. Tejinder Bhatti. It was around 2-3am when I reached Chandigarh on the same day and around 8am I was with Dr. Bhatti for my procedure. We just had a small chat discussing my hairline, temples and we were through. It took around 7 hours for the overall procedure. Dr. Bhatti did the most of the procedure himself. Upon completion of the procedure I was given Post Op care instructions and next day I went for my dressing which again was done by Dr. Bhatti himself. That was it and I was free. There was not a single moment of pain and discomfort. Dr. Bhatti and his team took extreme care overall. It was merely a span of 2 days and I would have never imagined that these 2 days are going to be the life changing ones for me. As a standard HT procedure, it took around 5-6 months since the transplanted hairs flourished exceeding my expectations. I no more had to use any fibers, no more had to be worried about hiding my pathetic hair condition. It was all natural. Dr. Bhatti had infused new life to my hairs and scalp. Till date all the people who know about my HT keep complimenting me every now and then. They all admire my current hair looks. W.r.t. the people who don’t know about my HT, they can’t even make out that I have done any treatment. It’s so natural that nobody can even guess it in their wildest dreams. You may refer pics and evaluate on your own. SUMMARY – Words such as skilled, adept, experienced, apt, professional can be considered a synonym for Dr. TEJINDER BHATTI. He is a master of his game. A profound HT surgeon who has the ability to furnish outstanding results. The entire team at Darling Buds clinic is extremely friendly, co-operative and caring. Though I don’t remember all the names but Shalini and Puneet are 2 individuals out of the team with whom I have already developed a bonding. Dr. Bhatti and team manage even the minutest thing from the inception till cessation with extreme care. The overall atmosphere of the clinic is completely apt. The results produced by Dr. Bhatti are prolific and he can truly be regarded as a man with magical hands. I would highly recommend Dr. Tejinder Bhatti and DARLING BUDS as “One Stop Destination” for all individuals who are highly caring about the health of their hairs. P.S. – The above is not at all an endorsement but the true narration of my self-experience with Dr. Tejinder Bhatti.
  19. Hi. I am losing my hair and I want to get a FUE hair transplant. I have been researching this topic for 1 year. I read some negative reviews and a lot of positive reviews on dr Diep. I have seen dr Diep YouTube videos. I don’t know what is real and what is not real in terms of the comments. Is there something I should be aware of when analyzing his YouTube videos? Am I missing something? Is it too good to be true? I ask these questions because I am a true born sucker....lol. I watch magic shows and I can’t figure any of it out. I can’t tell whether pictures are photoshopped on magazines. I do not know anything about optical illusion either. So, please tell me bluntly whether I am being fooled. I am “considering” dr. Diep for my procedure. If I sound stupid please forgive me for my ignorance.
  20. Hi I wanted to post a follow up to my original thread, two years and three months after my initial visit to Dr. Bahtti's clinic. With plenty of time to gather my thoughts and appreciate the full results I have put into words all that I've been able to gather in this journey. I hope it serves you well in your own: Good hair restoration is an artform. All great works of art have one thing in common, they were not created in one day, they evolve through time. From Michelangelo's David to da Vinci's Monalisa they were all the product of progressive work. The same applies to a great hair restoration, this is one of the most important lessons I have learned during this journey. Two years ago I underwent a successful 2100 grafts FUE procedure with Dr Bhatti, the results were impressive, as evidenced on my previous post. During my consultation with Dr Bhatti I asked him to take a "less is more" approach in order to safeguard as much of the donor area resources as possible for when I had a chance to experience the transplanted hair growth and understand the best ways to style it (remember you can always add more but once it has been transplanted you can't turn back and the donor area resources are a limiting factor). So, after a year of enjoying his work and becoming acquainted with the looks of different lengths and stylings I had a clear idea of what could make it look even better than it already did. It basically came down to accentuating the windows peak area, since it was a defining feature of my hairline in my early 20's and to maximize the density so that I could also wear my hair very short and the areas with original and transplanted hair would look as equally dense as possible. I have a protruded forehead and the peak makes it look much smaller and balances my facial proportions. Last May I contacted his office to make arrangements for another procedure, and to my surprise Dr Bhatti gladly agreed to perform it free of cost as a retouch because the hairline he drew on the first consultation took that area into account. Even then I was a bit in doubt if it was really necessary, to me that is testament to how good his initial work was. I've always been told that I have a baby face appearance therefore a more aggressive hairline doesn't look awkward, especially since he had brought my temples forward on the first procedure. I was looking forward to share the result with the doctor and his team as I was so grateful what they had done for me. The protocol was the same as in my first visit, this time they even assisted me with the arrangements for accommodation. His driver picked me up at the hotel the morning after my arrival and took me to their new facilities, a state of the art dedicated medical services building. Upon seeing their faces I couldn't help but smile, at that point no word could express my gratitude. We had a brief consultation where Dr Bhatti listened carefully to my feedback, he explained his plan, documented the results and proceeded to prep my head by trimming my hair very short. The plan was to add 500 grafts to the frontal hairline and the widow's peak. The procedure went as uneventful as the first, his team showing again a high level of skill and professionalism. As in the first procedure, Dr Bhatti did the anesthesia and harvesting of grafts. After a short breakfast break Dr Bhatti made the slits and this took around 20 mins. The old team of my previous procedure did the plantation. Well co-ordinated with Dr Bhatti supervising the plantation every now and then and enquiring about my comfort. The plantation Once done they covered my head and got me to eat some lunch. After that it was time to reveal the grafted area, clean the donor area and bandage my head, once again I was blown out of the water as the amount of work he puts in is so evident, opposed to the doctor who did my botched procedure in the USA. Once completed the driver took me back to my hotel. Next morning I was picked up and taken to the clinic for the removal of the bandages, a final documentation of his work and to go over the care instructions and receive the care kit. I had decided that this time I wanted to stay at the villa the clinic offers for post-op recovery in Kasauli, one of the hill stations adjacent to Chandigarh, an elegant and peaceful retreat that includes a lovely lady that cooks deliciously and cleans for you. At USD 25 a day it is worth every penny. After spending a few days there resting and exploring the hill station I was ready to hit the road, but before returning to the US it was time to make the most of my trip by enjoying some sightseeing, this year it was time to explore Amritsar, home to the Golden Temple. India is such a big country with such rich and complex history that you barely can scratch the surface in just one visit. I know I will be back. Dr Bhatti and his team are like distant relatives to me now, anytime I look at myself in the mirror I can't help but think about them and how much they've done for me. A few last thoughts two years into this journey. Number one, trust Dr Bhatti and his work and don't cheap out on the PRP therapy that he is advocating as it is an essential element in the transplant result's success. Second, as one would be tempted to get every single possible hair grafted in one shot, the true artform lies in the work not being detected, specially by those who know you. I have noticed in the last two years friend commenting in social media about people they know who have gotten work done and they poke fun at the fact that they can tell they've had work done due to a combination of unesthetic looking and excessive restoration, in my case the only comment I've received in numerous times has been that I don't seem to age, a testament to his work, a boost of confidence to me and a win for all.
  21. This a a total home run. Dr. Lorenzo is a true master of donor and recipient management. Congratulations.
  22. While I didn't create an account on this forum over the last couple of years it was invaluable in my research process and I want to pay it forward, especially since I seem to be seeing fewer patient posts with recent dates, at least for Dr. Cooley. Thus I will try to be thorough here in describing my process. Apologies in advance for the length of the post and the variability of the quality of the photos. I know they aren't the best. I am still only a few days/weeks out and will update this with before photos and after photos from the clinic and exact graft count(s) when I get them and try not to disappear throughout the process. My Past Situation I had an ill-advised FUT procedure when I was 21 to address temple recession. I wasn't on meds, it was premature, and I went to a cheap chop shop. CLASSIC, young guy being really stupid. :sigh The procedure (unknown # of grafts) involved putting grafts on the temples and unfortunately also some around the front of my hairline. It did very little cosmetically unless you count triggering massive loss of existing hair (most of which did grow back in fairness). The only saving grace here is that we were talking about a fairly minor temple area and because of my light hair/skin contrast I've been able to get away with a forward brush hairstyle that hid really poor work. Oh and it wasn't big plugs and the scar wasn't horrendous and avoided being in any disastrous region(s) thankfully. No matter what you do STAY AWAY from Samson Hair Restoration in Los Angeles regardless of what doctor they currently have cycled in. Why now Now, 11 years later at 32 with some additional thinning and some recession the previous work was becoming harder to cover, especially when swimming or my hair was wet. Plus, I just wanted it fixed to open up different hairstyles and to get ahead of managing what I believe will be future loss. Almost a gradual "replace" strategy I guess. In terms of meds, I had been on finasteride w/ no side effects for 4 years but then went off for 5+ years (don't really know why). I went back on 6+ months ahead in prep for a procedure and plan to stick with it this time. Not on finasteride or any other shampoos etc at the moment. Picking the surgeon In terms of research this time around I did a lot more homework using this forum as the basis for creating a smaller list of doctors. Ultimately I narrowed my list and research to consults with Lindsay, Bernstein, Cooley, Bloxham, and Nadimi. I felt these were really great doctors that didn't necessarily require a flight based on my East Coast USA location (I was intrigued by Rahal, Hasson/Wong/Kronior and some of the other staple of well regarded doctors as well but with only so much time felt good with my short list). I did not consider India/Turkey etc., not because I don't believe quality results can't be achieved there, but because I didn't want to take the risk and conduct an extra level of due diligence with respect to many of the practices and I was willing to pay $ for that peace of mind. Notes on my Consults During my consult with Dr. Lindsay I felt like he just didn't think I needed a procedure yet. He cited 1200 grafts and it was all relatively cursory. So not a fit for me Dr. Bernstein was a good consult (worth the cost) where I learned a bit and I felt comfortable with him and his work, but ultimately I wasn't blown away by the results I've seen from him either on his website or on this and other forums My consult with Bloxham was really terrific and I got a great feeling from him. He was ultimately my #2 but I did not choose him mostly because he is just relatively newer with fewer posted results. And right or wrong, some of the (rare/older) negative comments about customer service/interactions from Feller put me off. I did NOT have any of this sense from Dr. Bloxham and have never met Feller but the posts are there nonetheless. I will also say, they need to upgrade their facility. Not the medical side hopefully, but the rest of the place was old and run down feeling. Dr. Nadimi was also great (via Skype) and matter of fact but I got the sense she did more FUE than FUT. Similar to Bloxham there are just fewer patient accounts out there that I could find, but based on what I've seen and this consult I was very comfortable and impressed with her Why Cooley Ultimately, I went with the only doctor I didn't meet/ have a convo with directly in Dr. Cooley. I appreciated the consult with Lollie and a deeper understanding of their procedures and liked what I heard about use of Acell, how he preserved grafts out of body, his hands on approach, the tenure of his techs, and so on. But most importantly Cooley's track record of consistent results and patient experiences tipped me over (including one detailed repair write-up by a Blonde haired individual, of which there are relatively few results). I also literally did not find a single negative review (of outcomes) for Cooley in all my research and I valued that apparent consistency. Procedure - Why FUT I knew I wanted FUT as I (a) already had a scar I felt could be improved, (b) wanted to maximize future grafts and survivability, and (c) wanted to minimize recovery time. I am lucky enough to have a lot of Donor and existing hair that can be used to hide a procedure. Pre-Procedure and Day of All things posted about Cooley experiences were true for me. I followed pre-op instructions for scalp laxity. I think this helped as I could feel the sides definitely loosen up, and while the back still felt tight Cooley said it was great and helped with suturing (+ sutures out at 2 weeks vs. 3 weeks). The hotel they set you up in is excellent, easy, convenient and they already know why you are there and what you need. Shuttle drivers, check-in staff, and others there were helpful and discrete and the breakfast and gym is open early enough for day of eating and a last workout. On the day of the operation we met at 7am, had a calm and not rushed discussion where any other questions I had were answered, and re-affirmed my choice of 2500 FUT + PRP/Acell. In terms of hairline we were on the same page to opt for a conservative/mature hairline though Cooley jumped straight to the need for work on the temples which he said he does not always do. This process of agreeing on this was FAST as a lot of it was bridging existing hair and the past work plus a little bit of pulling temples out/down. In terms of PRP, Cooley was candid that for me he didn't know if PRP would make much of a difference as he didn't see a ton of minituraization but (a) I'm paranoid and think there is more than there is/I have very fine hair already, and (b) I am hopeful that it will help somewhat with avoiding shock loss or speeding up recovery. I know there's no real scientific evidence to back that up, but I was willing to spend the $ on the chance it helps. I will say that to make sure you get what you need before surgery begins you should 100% come prepared with your questions. For example in my consult with Bloxham he indicated that my past FUT scar had a small area branching into the danger zone for donor and advised forking the scar near my ear. I really did NOT want to do this, so asked Cooley about it. He decided to implant 10-15 hairs in the end of the old scar as part of the procedure and end the new scar in a safer location. I do not think we would have ultimately done this if I had not asked. H/T to Bloxham for noticing it in a really thorough, caring consult. I also asked about a few grafts poorly placed in the front of my forehead below the 7CM mark we agreed to for the new hairline. He said if I was OK With it that he would remove those with electrolysis which I agreed to and am relieved about as they were definitely not natural looking. Overall, it was a good conversation. I, like most others, felt comfortable and cared for by Dr. Cooley and all of his other wonderful team members. I do think the clinic could get better about having all their pre and post op documentation organized and sent in a big PDF but that's super minor overall and has nothing to do with the in-person interactions I had. One other area that I felt could be improved is in discussing recovery times. The clinic (not Cooley himself) were fairly aggressive in terms of discussing post HT recovery periods and timeline (no redness 5 days, not visible procedure at 8 days etc). It's not that they are totally off, it's just that they are definitely giving the aggressive, "best-case" scenario in my opinion and shaded this as an absolute vs. discussing the potential ranges of recovery times based on patient characteristics. Still thus far in my case it has proven to not be too far off the mark so far (devil's always in the details though isn't it). Procedure itself From the Cooley consult we moved into the procedure. Numbing/valium etc was painless. Unlike others I don't think I really went fully under for the ENTIRE duration of the procedure, I even heard a nice little "ripping" type sound on removal, but no pain whatsoever. By 11:30 the donor was removed, there were 5-6 technicians on the microscopes, I had had PRP and he had done the few electrolysis removals needed. I stopped for lunch and then we carried on. Cooley performed all of the donor incisions, with Brandi hovering nearby, and was present for probably 90% of the graft placement. I know for sure he was doing all the immediate hairline grafts. I believe he left for a little over an hour in the middle of the procedure (basically the length of a movie), but I'm not 100% on whether he popped his head in a few times during that time or not. While he was not actively working on my head Brandi was performing graft placement and I believe Amy also worked on placing grafts. Cooley returned and was essentially there the rest of the day long after many of the other techs had left post dissecting the grafts (easily 4-5+ more hours). It was clear he reviewed and had ample time to change, correct, or ensure any grafts not placed with him in the room were to his liking. Like others have mentioned it was clear throughout the day that this was a well-oiled machine, with team members that had worked together for years (decades even). Everyone was friendly and taking a dedicated and personalized approach to the operation, and I couldn't imagine going somewhere with a doctor doing multiple ops in a day. Throughout the process Brandi was constantly checking Cooley and making sure anything "controversial" about his approach was discussed (a few graft placements here and there, reminders about how many grafts were left etc). All of this was reassuring. I am sure the reverse also happened. Ultimately for the 2,500 graft procedure Cooley was able to get over 3,000 grafts (I will get exact counts later) and we did not finish the day until a bit after 7pm, meaning I was there for nearly 12 hours. This extra time and attention, plus the grafts that were not something I had to pay extra for, all speak to his long-running record of caring about his patients and working tirelessly to get results. I am obviously grateful for this. Post Op - Healing, Pain, and Experience (Week 1) Donor got painful at the end of the day during the operation so I was numbed up again before I went home. I was obviously a bit red and beat up but it wasn't as bad as I was expecting and they had already done a pretty good job cleaning a lot of the blood off. Plus I was wearing Saran wrap + a hat so able to avoid any weird looks. On night 1 I took some Tylenol but nothing stronger--which is good because I didn't get the prescriptions until day-of for stronger meds. Cooley's post-op care uses an ATP spray + saran wrap to increase moisture and prevent any graft damage and antibiotic ointment on the donor scar. You basically spray every hour you are awake and wake up and spray every 2 hours for the first 2 nights along with taking some preventative Prednisone for swelling. I followed the instructions religiously here and I think it really helped calm redness and speed healing. On night 2 I was falling back asleep pretty quickly so it didn't feel too onerous to keep getting up. For sure it kept the itchiness to a real minimum in the first 6 days. I went back the next morning for a post-op clean and got the all good from Dr. Cooley. During this cleaning Amy took time to answer any questions I had about the next week of care and was patient with what I am sure are the same questions everyone asks. In terms of the documentation they gave me to follow, I actually think it could have been a bit more detailed. It wasn't that it was bad, but I felt like an "FAQ" or just more exhaustive detail would have helped. For example, I asked about caffeine / alcohol / ibuprofen which were not listed (Cooley says moderate amounts of both are fine), and it doesn't give you much about how to sleep (when can you sleep sidweays on the grafts) and so on. To give you a sense of how smooth this was, I drove almost 7 hours home the very next day, which was completely fine and painless. Overall I found the post-op regimen easy to follow, the spray and saran wrap seemingly very effective even if I did probably use it too quickly/aggressively to try to get it through the native hair as I ran out a day or two earlier than I think the clinic expects. One curious thing with post-op care from the clinic is that it seems that Cooley's overall instructions,are more aggressive than many other docs (like the timeline to shampoo (next day) and return to regular shampooing (7 days) . I'm sure this is because Cooley is confident in the healing/quality of the grafts and incisions etc and has refined his approach over time but it does make me just a little nervous when looking at the instructions online from so many other places that are much more conservative. But he's my doc and I'm in his hands and so far so good. On night 3 I slept poorly but not really due to pain, I think I just missed exercise. On night 4 and 5 I had more pain when putting the back of my head on pillows (I slept elevated with an inflatable travel pillow partially inflated these nights to help with any potential swelling) and I did take a valium one night and the other pain killer + tylenol combo prescribed drug the fifth night. It almost felt like the donor was a little more stretched these two nights with whatever position I could find that didnt have too much pressure. If this continues I'll call the office to make sure it's normal. Some posters here have mentioned this as the return of nerve sensation but I'm not sure. Otherwise I have had some very very minor swelling which made me break out some ice on my forehead and eye area a couple of times and take ibuprofen periodically as well. It was never uncomfortable or especially noticeable to anyone else however. Last point, I am using the Hair Shake protein. I don't really think it'll do much but I've used protein powder a lot anyway so I don't mind and if it helps at all with speed of growth or minimization of shock-loss, then it's worth a couple months of it for me. I am not planning on using it long term and no one at the Cooley office actually mentioned it directly despite having it stocked there and having it listed as an optional part of the post-op procedure. Post Op Appearance - First Week The scar in the back is perhaps slightly visible with wet hair (first 3-4 days) but completely hidden with normal dry hair. As mentioned it wasn't giving me much trouble the first 3-4 days, although of course everything felt really "tight" there. At night or with pressure on it day 5-6 it actually has felt a bit worse and I've taken some of the prescribed meds just to make sure I get decent enough sleep. We will see of course on final healing and appearance, it is early days. Redness in the recipient has subsided each day, and now at day 6 is not bad at all. It's probably worse in the pictures than in real life. I am fairly pale skinned but had a deep tan going which some say can help. There is definitely scabbing, it is super mild/light and looks like when I return to regular shampooing and rub the grafts a bit it will easily flake off and be gone within the 7-10 day timeframe that they gave. In any case, it's really mild and not that noticeable. I have used their given shampoo and started leaving the conditioner in a bit longer which I think has helped. I have a couple spots of dried blood left but overall it's pretty clean and I haven't noticed anything remotely like grafts falling out. Really, not even many/any hairs yet. The kicker here for me is that I 100% had to hide from the world during this time because I was (a) spraying every hour and (b) couldn't style my existing hair for fear of touching/disloding existing grafts. So you could see the grafts taking hold and small stubbly hair, plus weird caked native hair that was a bit long already awkwardly plastered to my scalp. So all in all, a real lovely mess. Now had I managed this aggressively with a blow dryer on cool or if I was more comfortable touching and styling my scalp in this period I am sure I could have made it look better but I didn't want to take any risks. On Day 6 I did a bit of finger styling and with my existing hair I can make it look decent (see 1 of the pictures). Decent is not invisible however. The temples are harder to disguise and any close inspection things are definitely still visible so I feel I am very much still in hat land. To be fair, my wife says it's pretty hard to tell unless you get up close and personal already. We will see if my extended family at Day 11 notices anything. Summary of first week So far the difference from my first procedure has been remarkable. Basically instead of an immediate "oh shit what have I done" I felt more like a "I'm already looking better than I expected 12 hours later. and everything is going exactly like they said" It's nice to already feel like I made the right choice. The recovery seems to be text book according to their expectations, but I most certainly don't want to be out and about without a hat yet as it would be noticeable. The things I am worried about are (a) appearance at 10 days and masking it, (b) avoiding shock-loss as no work was done in the middle of the frontal third, and (c) continued management of the donor scar pain. All the rest is of course the standard, hurry up and wait, concerns about linear scar etc that we all have but if I can avoid shock loss I feel comfortable looking like I did for 6+ more months. I hope this is helpful and of course any feedback on the pics and actual quality of the work is welcome as well. Again, apologies on the photo quality I will get better ones from clinic later. I will try to post periodically as I hate the posts where people disappear but I also intend to try to live my life and not obsess over the progress over the next few months.
  23. Hi Folks, Long time lurker; My very first post here with the intent to share and contribute based on my upcoming surgery in India with Darling buds and most importantly “ My results “ in the next few months. I feel morally obligated to contribute at least something back to this community that offers : A worldwide network of HT experts, reputed Senior members sharing invaluable info, Top rated HT surgeons positioning their point of views and most importantly "real patients sharing real stories". Background Male in mid-thirties from Canada; NW 3 - Less/More. Past 6 years were dark and depressing. Living in a fool’s paradise; using Toppik daily assuming everything’s fine but somewhere at a deeper level; it continuously bothered me. Finally in 2019; I made the big decision to get a HT. This website is the main reason as to why I was able to solidify on my research, move ahead with a concrete decision and was able to find one of the best doctor (just being positive here) as per my checklist/strict criteria. Special thanks to the Creator of this website – Kudos to the brain that kicked off this humanitarian initiative as it continues to educate millions of potential patients like myself. Why Darling Buds India (I guess they changed the name to 5 Rivers Hospital ) This piece takes forever to decide especially for someone like me who spends gazillions of hours on the Internet/YouTube/Forums. I was always skeptical about giving my Head to someone to be operated; so consulted with many Canadian, American, European, Indian and Turkish clinics. Many reputed names like Dr. Rahal ( Known as the hairline king from Canada), Dr Acar ( Cosmedica Turkey), Dr. Erdogan ( Turkey), Aestimed ( Turkey), LA Hair ( USA), Qunomedical ( Belgium & German clinics), Dr. Cinik ( Turkey) and the list goes on……………………………………………. but None fitted my checklist in it's entirety reflecting 8 Key deciding factors that was prepared after extensive research for years 🙄 : 1. Max cost under 10,000 CAD ( 7500 USD ) for 3500-4000 Grafts to be able to achieve maximum density in my case. YES, I decided to find the best treatment within this range. IMHO, paying this much should suffice in getting you a world class, still affordable HT in today’s age with advanced Technologies, Globalization, the power of internet and competitive market. It's costing me around 9000 CAD ( including some expensive flight tickets) with Dr. Bhatti which seems adequate for the reputation he has or rather a steal ( not sure - will tell later) If budget wasn’t a constraint, I would’ve booked Dr. Rahal ( Canada ) who is local to me OR Dr. Baubac ( Alvi Armani USA) more importantly to save myself from the hassle of flying 20 hours one way, then drive to a different city, book a hotel for a week, apply for a visa, Take few weeks of vacation from work etc. Dr Rahal charges 8 CAD per FUE, most other clinics would cost the same in N. America for FUE Treatment. It’s costing me around 2.40 CAD with Dr. Bhatti ( includes all international/ Local flights, Visa, Hotel, Food, Cab etc.). If you compare Dr Bhatti's fee with his peers who fall in the same reputed arena of global doctors, I think most would sign this off as a great offering for hair loss patients globally. Eugenix quoted around 4 CAD per graft but it was for DHI method. They produced some great results lately and they are the inventors of DHI which is now adapted globally; goes to show that they are researchers also - very impressive. As of 2019, I think Dr. Bhatti and Eugenix should be compared as top players if India is the selected destination for your HT Journey ( My comparison below) I almost finalized Eugenix over Dr. Bhatti but then based on my research, took a U Turn : Eugenix positive aspects: 1. Biggest is DHI - OUT/IN grafts within minutes. Definitely better method as compared to Traditional FUE . I could only find positives so far, no negatives on DHI. It's hard to logically beat DHI method with traditional FUE; so no doctor should even try it IMO. I wish Dr Bhatti would offer DHI to his patients by now ☹ 2. Clinics are located in major cities like Delhi and Mumbai. No need to drive / fly again from major airport all the way to Chandigarh. Eugenix Negative aspects: 1. Some patients mentioned that they were taken for a ride. Eugenix Docs prey on foreign nationals; after or during mid surgery – Dr. Bansal asked for 500 more grafts payment as required and payment must be done during the middle of the operation ( insane); also no breakdown/reasoning was provided in the end. On the contrary, Darling buds has returned some fee to few patients to their surprise which is a classy act of ethical business in my opinion (hard to find) 2. Eugenix costs are almost double than Darling buds( quite expensive for many) but anyways DHI is more costlier than traditional FUE globally and if results are better with more graft survival rate, most patients wouldn't mind paying more. 3. Eugenix is run in a satellite office format, more than one location and hard to get a hold of prime doctors - Dr. Sethi and Dr. Bansal where as Dr. Bhatti provides a peace of mind with one location, one clinic, one doctor who is also the owner of that entire facility with 15 good staff members well trained under him in a peaceful non polluted city near a hill station. #3 was a critical factor in my decision to go with Dr. Bhatti In short, I would’ve loved DHI for best results but I settled with FUE for now Note: Out of thousands, This site recommends ONLY 2 surgeons from Turkey, 7 surgeons from India and 1 from Canada ( I was surprised to see only Dr. Rahal in the list, yes Hasson is there but they're again advocates of FUT ), so HRN really helped me short list 10 surgeons before making the final call 2. ONLY FUE for ME – My heart said a Big “No“ to a linear scar; doesn’t matter if some Doctors persuade you with somewhat genuine reasoning's to avoid FUE such as : FUE provides Less density, FUT offers more grafts and saves Donor area as untouched for future sessions, FUE is a blind process etc. Dr. Feller and Dr. Soni ( Medispa India) seems like the two biggest advocates of FUT over FUE and I agree with some of their explanations as it sounds logical. Dr. Soni really pushed me to sign up with FUT and said his scar technique is different. Promised that he will close it in a way where almost no scarring is visible . It was tough buying into that argument, additionally recent negative reviews about him and I finally decided to brush him aside at that point. 3. Doctor MUST perform the operation (No technicians) – I could only find someone as reputed as Dr. Bhatti who performs 80% of the procedures that includes Hair trimming (to feel your hair ), Anesthesia, FUE Extractions with motorized punch and Incisions. In Turkey where I was almost sold at one point, all operations are run by Technicians. Not a Plastic surgeon, no educational background/ competency level ( it's scary as they're known as the butchers of HT industry) I wish Dr. Bhatti would implant the grafts too ( not his nurses) for extra cost but I guess it will be a tedious job for a busy surgeon to sit for another 4 hours or so ....... Am I asking for too much 4. World class facility matching North American standards : with Heart rate monitoring, proper blood tests, blood pressure check up, spotless , Face coverings during entire operation and sterile environment. 5. Super microscopes and Magnifiers is a must ( Most Turkish clinics operate with naked eyes, when I asked they tried to sell me bull *&**** ) This is extremely important during all 4 phases of operation : Extraction – To make sure proper gaps are left in between grafts in the donor area and get the right angle before using the punch. Sorting – To count how many pure singles, doubles, triples and quads ( if any ) are collected. Incisions – To ensure least collateral damage, magnifier will show 6 x scalp surface so during incisions, holes are made at the right angle, depth and only on bald scalp areas ( not where you've some fine hairs). This should also minimize some shock loss in the post op phase. Implantation - Imperative to only use pure singles / baby soft hairs in the very first few rows of hairline and Temples. If by mistake, they implant doubles – it will give a pluggy look and I would rate that transplant as 50% failed right then and there. If during implant, nurses grab a multi - haired graft, at least microscopes will allow them to revisit to find a pure single graft and then insert it in the right spot. Joe Tillman's video is quite helpful : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MeQ4ZvEHb7Y 6. Doctor should have a solid reputation on major forums, hair restoration network, should be well read, traveled, have some global exposure, recommended by Bald-truth, Spex and many other HT mentors like Joe Tillman. Dr. Bhatti checks all those boxes. Yes – there are some mixed opinions about him (and every other Top HT surgeon out there) but perfection is impossible to achieve; so I decided to just look at the bigger picture and go for it. 7. Detailed info, pre op care, post op care, regular contacts and supporting your patients in their hours of greatest needs is of utmost importance. Its well know that Dr. Bhatti, Shera ( his rep) , California would contact their ex. Patients regarding some concerns, would stand by them and not disappear. This was impressive. 8. Patient advisor should be genuine, honest and straightforward – So far, Shera has been awesome, friendly and taking care of all my minor/ major concerns. Always reachable, quick responses and a real time patient who has experienced the same Doctor few years ago first hand. In the long run, it helps to have a contact like him for small chats if need be. I will continue to share my Journey with Darling buds and also, highlight If any red flags are there. So far, I’m just one naive internet researcher in this field who talks based on theories and hypothetical situations, I don’t have any practical experiences yet. Assuming I've made a good decision by choosing this clinic (over others) and trying to keep a positive mindset hoping I will be in good hands is the only thing I can do now. One Sr. Member said it wisely – “For Dr. Bhatti and his staff ( or other clinics) 18th March will be just another day with another patient like thousands came before and will come after, but for a patient who’s been researching on this constantly day/night, it’s a big life event and 18th is one of the most important day of his life after which either he could regain his lost confidence or could loose it forever “ After all, handing off your head to someone for the entire day isn’t one easy decision I’ve seen members here supporting each other against doctors if results aren’t satisfactory. That speaks volumes and the main reason as to why I joined here to gain support from my so called “Anonymous hair restoration family” Dr. Bhatti's hairlines were talked about – not too dense? Any suggestions? Should I revisit this with him ? I don't want a sparse hairline but Not sure if this was an old issue (one -off) Also, I’ve not met Dr Bhatti for any F2F consulting yet or a video consultation, plan is to meet him a day before my procedure. So far, Shera is my driving force. I’m hoping for a life changing experience (like many others), regain my lost confidence and I always say “ Hope “ is something that brings us to these Doctor’s doorsteps. Yes finance and reviews are important aspects but we all hope to be treated in the best possible way during our special treatment day. A little daunting for me to fly all the way, get operated in a surgical room, holes in my head but I’m collecting all the courage in this world to get this done. Shera is helping like one true Samaritan If some of you are able to read this completely, my apologies for such a long note but this is the only forum where I am able to write everything anonymously and vent out if need be. My Journey to be continued……………………………………………………………………………………............................................
  24. Thank you Dr. Bhatti, If proven to be true with evidence. This will not be tolerated at all. I’ve made it crystal clear to our community that we will not stand for any form of extortion.