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Which option should I pick?  

29 members have voted

  1. 1. Which option should I pick?

    • Go with Dr Paul Shapiro
    • Go with Hasson & Wong ONLY if I get an appointment with Dr Hasson
    • Go with Hasson & Wong ONLY if I get an appointment with Dr Wong
    • Go with Hasson & Wong regardless of which doctor I get an appointment with
    • Delay my plans till I can get an appointment with Dr Ron Shapiro


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Hi All,

 

I am looking to get a procedure done during Christmas this year and after having done a fair bit of research, I narrowed my list down to Hasson & Wong and Shapiro Medical Group (SMG).

 

I have been in touch with both clinics, but am having trouble deciding which one to go with, so I am hoping I can get some help here!

 

The way I see it, it's not exactly an apple-to-apple comparison - which is making the decision a little tricky:

 

1. Doctor:

 

SMG: Given my preferred schedule, I can only book with Dr Paul Shapiro and NOT Dr Ron Shapiro himself. (Is this something I should be concerned about?).

 

vs

 

H&W: I haven't specifically spoken to Mike about who would perform the procedure on me (I will confirm that later today). Between Dr Hasson and Dr Wong though, is there a general preference/recommendation?

 

 

2. Strip vs FUE / # Grafts:

 

SMG: Given my relatively young age (27), Matt (Zupon) recommended that I get on to Propecia and let the meds work on my top and crown area, while we focus the procedure on to the hair line. As such, an FUE would be the way to go - given the relatively low number of donor grafts required for this first procedure (Matt recommended 1600-2000).

 

H&W: Mike was not so 'pro-FUE' (partly coz H&W does not offer FUE procedures?) and said Strip would be the way to go. He estimated 3500-4000 grafts on the hairline and top core (leaving the crown for Propecia to take care of).

 

So my options are:

 

A. 1600-2000 graft FUE with Dr PAUL Shapiro

 

OR

 

B. 3500-4000 graft Strip with either Dr Hasson or Dr Wong

 

 

My question then is - which option should I go with? I need to confirm my booking at either clinic in the next day or two - so I'm a little pressed for a decision - but I'm having trouble deciding between the two!

 

Also - SMG may not have a slot open at my preferred schedule at all (even with Dr Paul Shapiro), while H&W has confirmed a slot for me. Not that I think that should be a big part of the decision, but it is a consideration nonetheless....

Another small factor - given the difference in the number of grafts recommended - the procedure would be about 25% cheaper at SMG than at H&W (Again, not a big consideration in my mind).

 

Any help / advice will be much much appreciated. Thanks a lot all!!

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Personally, I believe that because you're young, I think it's best that you go the FUE route. You can always have a strip surgery performed in the future if it's needed. However, you ultimately need to decide whether the limitations of FUE are outweighed by it's benefits, or whether the limitations of strip are outweighed by its benefits. There isn't a one size fits all approach.

 

H&W do great work, and they post more examples of that work than any other clinic, so you'll be in good hands if you decide to have strip with them.

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Thanks TC - appreciate the advice.

 

if I do with the FUE option... would you recommend going ahead with Dr Paul Shapiro (and getting the procedure done as per my preferred schedule - this Dec) or would you rather suggest I get it done only by Dr Ron Shapiro (even if it means waiting another 6-12 months)?

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Dr. Ron and Dr. Paul have both been performing FUE for the same amount of time, so I'd assume that their training level in the field is comparable. It is possible that one has more natural aptitude than the other, but there's no real way of knowing that.

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You said that you've been in contact with both offices. Have you had an in-office visit with both of them before?

 

The H&W route is a LOT of grafts for the hairline. Do you know what your scalp laxity is like? Do you know what your donor density is? H&W is a GREAT office so I presume that they wouldn't make a recommendation without this information.

 

Both places are reputable and produce amazing results. But you're making a life-long decision here and you want to examine each option CAREFULLY.

 

It sounds like you know about the risks of FUE and Strip. If FUE doesn't give you the yield and fullness that you desire, you can always go the strip route down the road. And if you do FUE and you still experience hypo-pigmentation, it's a relatively small session that shouldn't leave an unsightly donor area in the hands of a good surgeon with small extractions.

 

If it were me, I'd probably go with Shapiro for an FUE. But some people just can't get any good results from FUE because of their skin & hair characteristics. Are you one of those people? Unfortunately, I still don't think there's a way to figure it out without actually DOING IT.

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Thanks again, TC. You are absolutely right - both Dr Ron and Paul Shapiro have the same (albeit, quite limited) amount of experience with FUE - so there's no real basis to discriminate between the two. But I'm just a little weary, coz all the good things that have been documented about SMG seem to be about Dr Ron Shapiro... and given I can't get an appointment with him end of this year, I just wanted to be sure Dr Ron's an equally good choice as well.

 

Does anyone who's been treated by Dr Ron Shapiro have any input?

 

Gomez - I haven't visited either of the clinics - only been in touch via email / phone. So the only things they've looked at are pictures that I sent through.

 

And yes - I have read up on the FUE and Strip procedures - but any advice in supporting / dismissing either procedure is much appreciated!

 

And to be honest - I don't know how my scalp laxity is, or whether my skin / type are suited for an FUE, but I also don't know how to go about figuring those out (without having to fly to the clinics!). Any advice on that front?

 

 

So - from the poll (granted - based on only 7 votes), it seems the two winning options for now are:

 

A. Get a strip procedure done with Dr Hasson as per my planned schedule

 

OR

 

B. Get an FUE done with Dr RON Shapiro - even if it means I may potentially have to delay my surgery up to a year

 

Any views / recommendations between the two? (Of course, I understand that a lot depends on my personal situation, etc.... but any advice is much much appreciated!)

 

Thanks a tonne again all!

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fullhead, I was in a similar situation, deciding between strip with Dr. Rahal and FUE with SMG for hairline. in the end, I decided on FUE with Paul Shapiro (I actually preferred him over Dr. Ron). IMO, I think Dr. Ron and Dr. Paul are doing comparable hairlines, and to me, Dr. Paul's hairlines looked a little more youthful. getting it done first week of December. if you're interested in hearing more about my decision process, let me know.

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Hi Huangdong - Thanks for your response and congrats on having made the decision!

 

I am definitely VERY interested in hearing about your decision process! Specifically:

 

1.Why do you prefer Dr Paul over Dr Ron? Is there any other reason apart from the more youthful hairlines you mentioned?

 

2. Your reasons for picking FUE over Strip?

 

3. I presume this is your first procedure too? Are you just getting your hairline reconstructed too? Or having the top and crown worked on as well?

 

4. Also - just curious - how much in advance did you have to confirm your appointment with SMG?

 

I'm sure I'll have more questions - but any advice on the above for now will be a great help. Thanks again and good luck!

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Gomez - I haven't visited either of the clinics - only been in touch via email / phone. So the only things they've looked at are pictures that I sent through.

 

And yes - I have read up on the FUE and Strip procedures - but any advice in supporting / dismissing either procedure is much appreciated!

 

And to be honest - I don't know how my scalp laxity is, or whether my skin / type are suited for an FUE, but I also don't know how to go about figuring those out (without having to fly to the clinics!). Any advice on that front?

 

I think that knowing your scalp laxity would be really important in long-term planning. I'm not sure how it's determined, or if it can change after a surgery, but I'm guessing that the best way to find out is to have your head examined in person by a good surgeon. It needn't necessarily be Shapiro or H&W. Maybe there's a good surgeon nearby who would be willing to meet with you and give you an opinion?

 

Some doctors will talk about the limits of FUE based on skin/hair qualities. But what about whether a person has enough scalp laxity to harvest the donor area needed for long-term planning? And how can a surgeon comfortably recommend a large number of grafts not knowing if the person has a tight scalp not suitable for multiple excisions if need be?

 

I'm thinking about a lot of these questions myself. I'm considering having a HT in the coming months and I haven't decided on strip or fue yet myself. Both have pros and cons.

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Hey fullhead, in response to your questions:

 

1. Yes, first HT for me. I have pretty thick coverage expect for the 1-2 inches that I've receded up front, so it's hairline work only.

 

2. Why Dr. Paul? I live in NYC and started researching the best hairline work about 8 months ago. I met with coalition doctors in/around NYC, but wasn't overly impressed with their hairline results. Ultimately, after consults and a lot of research, I determined that Rahal and SMG produced the most natural hairlines (believe me, I would have preferred to have it done in NY, but I just felt those 2 were the tops).

 

It was a tough call between Rahal and SMG. Rahal appeared to have more young patients in my situation (NW 2-2A who need hairline work only) . SMG appeared a little more conservative. Both had outstanding results. In the end, I chose SMG b/c I wanted FUE, and SMG has more FUE experience (Rahal is pretty raw with FUE I believe).

 

I chose FUE b/c of my preference for no linear scar and the quicker recovery time. As another poster pointed out, I can always get strip later if needed. Also, in speaking with SMG, I have confidence that the transection rate will be relatively low (compared to industry-wide rates).

 

that brings me to Dr. Paul. Given my current hair situation (good coverage, maintaining crown well), I'd like to take a somewhat youthful approach to my hairline (though certainly not overly aggressive). My feeling is that both Dr. Ron and Dr. Paul produce outstanding results, and that Dr. Ron is slightly more conservative than Dr. Paul. And while I certainly would not characterize Dr. Paul as aggressive, I feel that he may be willing to take a slightly more youthful approach with my hairline. Just my opinion.

 

As for the timing, I was in discussions with SMG for a couple of months. Ultimately, I booked an appointment about 2 months in advance, and was fortunate to get that appointment (they were filling up quickly).

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an option like "Neither of them" should also be added to the poll, becouse maybe someone feels like this way,,

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That would be irrelivant Tsakalos as these are the authors chosen clinics and the pol is to help him proceed, due to his time constraints and availabe slots/drs he is able to cordinate with..........

 

if neither was a option it wouldnt aid him in finding a dr to carry out the surgery he seeks and is comitted to getting.....

 

so instead of neither thus no dr, may be you would like to suggest and alternative dr as this would best serve the authors needs???

 

:D

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First off well done for doing your research, you've chosen 2 of the best clinics. IMO a young guy who, even on propecia will probably experience further hairloss should not opt for fue. Fue gives a lower yield, so essentially more grafts die and are wasted. Also, grafts are taken from a large area that may be outside the donor safe zone. Fue will also reduce your donor density as it were and causes a lot of scarring which can make strip surgery less effective in the future. Bearing this in mind and that you will probably have more loss in the future, I would go for strip. Also H&w will likely transplant the front half of your scalp in one go, meaning when you get future loss it will be more natural than if you just get your hairline reestablished. However SMG do gd work and I would consider strip with them too. Their hairlines are more youthful. But if you have a family history of NW5+, go to H&W-no one has as gd a record with extensive hairloss patients.


_________________________________________________

Propecia since July 2008

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Thanks a lot, all for all the great advice.

It seems both Dr Paul and Ron Shapiro are completely booked out for the year.

 

Splitting hairs - I was actually leaning towards an FUE with SMG sometime later next year instead - but now having read your response, I'm in two minds again.

 

To be completely honest, I am a little apprehensive about a strip procedure - because of the extensive scarring and healing time involved, and one of my other big concerns is that if i go the strip route, it'll be that much more difficult have the procedure go undetected at work.

 

With the FUE, I was just going to shave my head off - so at least it'd be uniform and hopefully, with one week's leave from work around the procedure, the scarring would've potentially healed. I was thinking this had a higher chance of going undetected vs the Strip.

 

Taking more than a week's leave from work is quite difficult for me and it is very important for me to have the procedure go undetected. This is a big draw towards an FUE procedure.

 

What are your thoughts on this? Is my assessment of the FUE being easier to go undetected than a strip procedure correct?

 

People who have already had strip procedures - how did you'll make sure the procedure went undetected? Or is there no way of it going completely undetected?

 

Thanks again all for all your help! Much much appreciated.

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I didn't have FUE with Dr. Paul but I did have a strip surgery done by him about 14 months ago. Check out my detailed blog. I'm very happy with the results and going for another round in the future.

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I chose Dr Hasson for my transplant. I did this based on my goals and what I fee is a good long term approach that their clinic offers.

 

It would be near impossible to have your transplant go undetected unless you're able to wear a hat. I'm about 3 weeks out and if my head were shaved it would be completely apparent I had a transplant. Luckily for me, I had a week off, went back to work for 2 weeks then was laid off which will probably last through the winter into early springs, plenty of recovery time.

 

Good luck with your choice.

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Thanks Aaron, YouLiveOnlyOnce for your responses and for sharing your experiences.

 

Turns out there's been changes in the doctors' schedules - so i now have confirmed sessions with:

1. Dr Hasson for a STRIP procedure

2. Dr PAUL Shapiro for an FUE

 

The way i see it - i could go with either of the above options OR have an FUE or a Strip with Dr RON Shapiro sometime next year (I'm in no rush - happy to wait, if that's the best option).

 

If the poll results so far are anything to go by - Dr Hasson is the doctor of choice, followed by Dr RON Shapiro and then Dr Paul Shapiro. I'm not sure what the make up of the forum participants is though, so that could potentially be introducing a bias in the polls (eg: if the forum is mostly frequented by Dr Hasson's patients, it is quite likely the poll results will tilt in his favour). I'm not undermining any of the responses (which are much much appreciated) - but just want to be aware of that potential bias there, before putting blind faith in the poll results!

 

I'm personally more comfortable thinking of an FUE procedure - mostly coz i think its easier for the procedure to go undetected that way (again, please correct me if you think i'm wrong in assuming this) + no linear scar is certainly a big plus! so if FUE is the way to go - that would basically mean I go with Dr Paul Shapiro end of the year, or book a time with Dr Paul Shapiro sometime next year.

 

I'm far from decided - but need to make a call before Monday next week! As always - any advice will be much much appreciated!

 

Thanks again all!

Edited by fullheadNOT
accidental paste!

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That would be irrelivant Tsakalos as these are the authors chosen clinics and the pol is to help him proceed, due to his time constraints and availabe slots/drs he is able to cordinate with..........

 

if neither was a option it wouldnt aid him in finding a dr to carry out the surgery he seeks and is comitted to getting.....

 

so instead of neither thus no dr, may be you would like to suggest and alternative dr as this would best serve the authors needs???

 

:D

 

based on personal experience i do not recommend any strip hair transplant .

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Wow, no love for Dr. Wong yet??


Finasteride 1.25 mg. daily

Avodart 0.5 mg. daily

Spironolactone 50 mg twice daily

5 mg. oral Minoxidil twice daily

Biotin 1000 mcg daily

Multi Vitamin daily

 

Damn, with all the stuff you put in your hair are you like a negative NW1? :D

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Guys - I have more or less decided to go ahead with the FUE with Dr Paul Shapiro right after Christmas!

 

Thanks for all your advice - everyone's advice has gone a long way in helping me get closer to a decision - even if i may not end up following your specific recommendations.

 

Fingers crossed - hoping I don't change my mind between now and Monday (when I have to confirm my plans with SMG)!

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Thanks a lot, all for all the great advice.

It seems both Dr Paul and Ron Shapiro are completely booked out for the year.

 

Splitting hairs - I was actually leaning towards an FUE with SMG sometime later next year instead - but now having read your response, I'm in two minds again.

 

To be completely honest, I am a little apprehensive about a strip procedure - because of the extensive scarring and healing time involved, and one of my other big concerns is that if i go the strip route, it'll be that much more difficult have the procedure go undetected at work.

 

With the FUE, I was just going to shave my head off - so at least it'd be uniform and hopefully, with one week's leave from work around the procedure, the scarring would've potentially healed. I was thinking this had a higher chance of going undetected vs the Strip.

 

Taking more than a week's leave from work is quite difficult for me and it is very important for me to have the procedure go undetected. This is a big draw towards an FUE procedure.

 

What are your thoughts on this? Is my assessment of the FUE being easier to go undetected than a strip procedure correct?

 

People who have already had strip procedures - how did you'll make sure the procedure went undetected? Or is there no way of it going completely undetected?

 

Thanks again all for all your help! Much much appreciated.

 

I am in the military and want to have a transplant done while I am on leave. Do you know the range of cost you expect to spend?

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