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Raymond Konior, MD - 4,320 FUT Grafts - August 2013


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Well I thought I’d start by describing how the day went as that’s what most people are interested in and will talk about some other useful stuff in another post…

 

So my procedure day had finally arrived and I was collected from the hotel by Tom (the office manager) at 6am.

 

On arrival I met Lisa who is the lead technician and has worked with Dr Konior for years.

 

With Tom I went through some paperwork, basically signing up to the number of grafts, consent forms and checklists etc.

 

Lisa came in to check my blood pressure and was shortly followed by the Dr. I’m a bit hazy on the details but basically he said we would essentially be doing 2 x 2,000 graft strip surgeries one after the other because the stick and place method of grafting would take a lot of time. The entire strip would be cut in the morning but half would be left in place until the afternoon. It was also suggested that if any sensations above a ‘pinch’ were felt during any stage of the procedure I should make him aware of it. That way we could keep on top of any discomfort.

 

We then moved on to the hairline design. I was handed a cotton swab and asked to outline the shape of where I’d like it. I went pretty conservative. I’m almost 35 and would rather have a solid front 1/2 than a solid front 1/3rd…Anyway, the Dr then got the marker out and drew something way better which would reduce the size of the corners but still covered the front half. It looked great and I couldn’t have made it any better however, I did suggest using some grafts to improve the temple points. They have faded away but not moved since I was in my teens.

 

Next up I had to stand next to the famous green screen for the pre-op photos. I was also given the first couple of shots of valium.

 

One of the techs gave me a disposable shirt to wear so I put that on and was given a restroom opportunity and then led into the surgical room. After the valium you don’t really feel any nerves.

 

First up you lie face down with your head on a donut shaped head support. I was awake for the strip removal but not sure how long it took. It must have been about an hour. There was obviously the shaving of the site and a lot of masking tape to hold adjacent hair back. The numbing shots were sharp but not that bad. My ears were covered with pads as part of the prep by the techs but I could hear the suction device (Spanker told me what that was for the next day) and I think I heard the strip coming out though it didn’t really bother me at all – I’ve seen it done before (the wonders of YouTube). The only minor problem I had was a lack of circulation to my left arm but managed to shift my shoulder into a better position.

 

I got another break and some Gatorade and a snack for 10mins while the room set up was changed, plus another valium pill. It was now time to lie on my back for the planting of the grafts. It must have been about 9am but the next thing I remember is the Dr telling me where I was. It had now fast forwarded to 1:45pm. It was around this time I had the Turkey sandwich lunch that Tom had mentioned in the morning (you can choose alternatives).

 

From then on I can just remember being in a daze, hearing some discussion about needle sizes and grafts, and mentioning to the Dr and Lisa when I started to feel ‘pinching’ sensations. Eventually we broke again for the second part of the strip removal but that only took 10 minutes. I can remember the tugging of the sutures and sound of the staples going in. Everything was well drilled and efficiently done.

 

The last thing I can remember is the temple point work which must have been completed just gone 12. We were all done and dusted and I remember being back in the consultation room being handed a mirror to look at the work and given instructions for the medications. I was driven back to the hotel by one of the techs.. (There was no time for post op photos so they were taken a couple of days later instead.)

So that’s all there is to it really. It wasn’t until the day after Dr Konior said it was a really tough day getting the grafts to stay in properly. From my perspective I didn’t know any better so if that is as bad as it gets for the patient then let me tell you you will have nothing to worry about.

 

I came in the following 3 days for a clean up and ended up changing my flight home to a day later. I had a tough time with the swelling but with constant icing I kept it away from my eyes. Apart from that there was no significant discomfort at all. You just have to make sure you follow the medication regime.

 

I have to say that everyone at the office was extremely nice and hardworking, even coming in on their days off. Overall the Dr was very pleased with the healing the following couple of days in both recipient and donor – very little redness or scabbing and some small signs of growth. The staples came out on Day 2 and I didn’t feel a thing.

 

Additional thanks to ... aka Spanker for his special guest appearance! Nice to meet Aaron1234 as well, albeit briefly.

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Edited by 1978matt
Incorrect graft count
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4,312 FUT grafts (7,676 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2013

1,145 FUE grafts (3,152 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2018

763 FUE grafts (2,094 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - January 2020

Proscar 1.25mg every 3rd day

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Well I thought I’d start by describing how the day went as that’s what most people are interested in and will talk about some other useful stuff in another post…   So my procedure day had finally ar

The Comfort Suites This is the preferred hotel for your stay as it is well priced and 5 minutes walk to the office. Konior patients get a discount. The internal of the hotel is quite dated but the ro

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This will be superb I'm sure!! Dr k never seems to have less than top notch results!! You researched well and chose as a dam good doc to boot!! How comes spanker was there??? You deserve and should get a spanker result, which is as good as it gets!!

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The Comfort Suites

This is the preferred hotel for your stay as it is well priced and 5 minutes walk to the office. Konior patients get a discount. The internal of the hotel is quite dated but the rooms appear to have been refurbished recently and were clean. I'd recommend the ground floor rooms near the ice dispenser, vending machine and free coffee facilities. You get a fridge/freezer and microwave in the room. The only downside is that there is no restaurant / room service but there is a basic breakfast which starts at 6am on weekdays and 7am on weekends. Some people complain about the noise from traffic if your room is roadside, however, I barely heard a thing during my entire stay. The free wifi worked well.

 

Local Area

You could get a cab to and from the airport and not need to bother renting a car. However, it is not the most pedestrian friendly area. There's a big supermarket, 7-Eleven, bar / pizza place, and a chinese buffet ($7.99 lunch inc drink) all within a 5 minute walk. Walgreens is across the road so you can pick up your prescriptions from there.

 

I drove to the nearest Walmart where everything was about 25% cheaper and also managed to find useful stuff like Aloe Vera 100% Gel and 1000mg MSM tablets, 3 x Generic Rogaine Foam for $29.99+Tax, cheap Ibuprofen and anti-biotic ointment. (Having checked Google, Walmart is actually very close and could be walked in 10-15minutes, i.e. no need for a car.)

Edited by 1978matt
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4,312 FUT grafts (7,676 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2013

1,145 FUE grafts (3,152 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2018

763 FUE grafts (2,094 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - January 2020

Proscar 1.25mg every 3rd day

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Great writeup, Matt.

 

Congrats on your HT--I'm sure you're going to have a stellar result. We're the same age, so I'll be following your results closely.

 

Isn't it cool how the docs make time fly during the procedure? During my last procedure (#2), I hadn't slept the night prior...so the meds I was given pretty much knocked me out the entire time. I remember being woken up for lunch, and then just at the end. I had planned to spend hours playing around with my phone or tablet, but both never left my bag. I then slept another 10+ hours that evening..making for somewhere in the neighborhood of 18 hours of sleep that day!

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Congrats on the surgery. I think you will be very happy. You did a great job icing and your medication journal put mine to shame. It looks like you really did your part to get a great result. Excited to see this come together.

I am an online representative for Dr. Raymond Konior who is an elite member of the Coalition of Independent Hair Restoration Physicians.

View Dr. Konior's Website

View Spanker's Website

I am not a medical professional and my opinions should not be taken as medical advice.

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Matt,

 

Congratulations! Thanks for taking the time to share your detailed experience with Dr. Konior. I wish you the best of luck. Please keep us posted on your progress.

David - Former Forum Co-Moderator and Editorial Assistant

 

I am not a medical professional. All opinions are my own and my advice should not constitute as medical advice.

 

View my Hair Loss Website

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Congrats Matt!!! I don't even have to worry about you keepying us updated as I know you will. The end result looks like it's going to be fantastic. I'm really excited for this one.

My Hair Loss Website

 

Surgical Treatments:

 

Hair transplant 5-22-2013 with Dr. Paul Shapiro at Shapiro Medical Group

Total grafts transplanted: 3222

*536 singles *1651 doubles * 961 triples,

*74 quadruples.

Total hairs transplanted: 7017

 

 

Non-Surgical Treatments:

 

*1.25 mg finasteride daily

*Generic minoxidil foam 2x daily

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Nice one 1978Matt - got there in the end :)

 

Did the Dr leave you with two scars or one? I didn't quite understand that bit.

2 poor unsatisfactory hair transplants performed in the UK.

 

Based on vast research and meeting patients, I travelled to see Dr Feller in New York to get repaired.

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Thanks for all your best wishes and comments. I had a good 13hr sleep last night shaking off the jet lag. The swelling is more or less gone.

 

Out of interest I measured the hairline to eyebrows and it's 7cm. The hairline density looks be 50 fu/cm2.

How comes spanker was there???
He was having his 12 month follow up. It was funny that I got a call to be collected in reception and as I left he was standing there literally about to knock the door!

 

Isn't it cool how the docs make time fly during the procedure? During my last procedure (#2), I hadn't slept the night prior...so the meds I was given pretty much knocked me out the entire time
Yeah, I got about 5hrs sleep the night before and combined with jet lag I found it more preferable to watching movies.

 

I didn't use valium afterwards but the first few nights I generally found it ok sleeping at a 45 degree angle. I probably got 5 or 6 hrs sleep each night and set the alarm on my phone at intervals to take the meds.

 

Btw your staples came out on Day 2? I know Dr. K uses staples and sutures, can you explain how he closes if you remember?
I was applying the ointment earlier and saw how neat and tidy the suturing is. I think on big cases he uses the staples to provide additional support in the first few days and will take them out early if you're healing well.

 

I know he took a lot time cutting the strip and commented I had way more grey hairs than expected! (I dyed my hair a couple of nights before).

 

Nice one 1978Matt - got there in the end

Did the Dr leave you with two scars or one? I didn't quite understand that bit.

Yeah it's still one scar. He took the left side out first and the suturing joins together in the middle. It's all very compact and my existing hair covers it well. Edited by 1978matt

4,312 FUT grafts (7,676 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2013

1,145 FUE grafts (3,152 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2018

763 FUE grafts (2,094 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - January 2020

Proscar 1.25mg every 3rd day

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I've added a couple of photos under normal and harsh lighting.

4,312 FUT grafts (7,676 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2013

1,145 FUE grafts (3,152 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2018

763 FUE grafts (2,094 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - January 2020

Proscar 1.25mg every 3rd day

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Did Dr. Konior say how many grafts you still have available for future OP's?

Also how was the travel with HT?

 

I didn't ask but I know he probably wouldn't answer that question. He doesn't like to give arbitrary numbers.

 

The Airport

 

Arrivals:

 

Chicago O'Hare is about the worst airport I've ever visited in the US and maybe in the world!

 

It's got 5 terminals and I think T5 is where most international flights arrive/depart. It's the second time I've arrived there and it took 50 minutes to get through security. That was a big improvement on the 2hrs 20 minutes I experienced a few years ago.

 

If you have to get a connecting flight from another city, e.g. NY then this is no bad thing as you would arrive via the domestic (1,2,3) terminals.

 

There's an elevated level outside all terminals which is for departures while arrivals are on the ground floor. Exiting from the ground floor you can get the complementary buses to the car rental firms or taxis. I took the Hertz bus which as you come outside of T5 is at the far left end of the drop off area. You will see all the AVIS, Europcar rental buses coming and going.

 

I didn't care what car I hired so long as it was an auto with Satnav. When entering the hotel address you enter it as '17W445 Roosevelt' and once that's set it will be contained within the 'recent destinations' tab on the Satnav. I think you have to input the city as 'Villa Park, IL' first, then 'Roosevelt Road' followed by '17W445'.

 

Departures:

 

The Satnav has a 'Hertz Airport Return' button so you just select that to be directed back to O'Hare (make sure you don't select Midway Airport - that's the other main airport in Chicago) and is about 20 minutes from the Hotel.

 

I have a lot of frequent flyer miles saved and used these to get a Business Class seat home. Unfortunately when I changed my flight to the next day I had to forfeit about 60,000 miles but the tax payment was refunded. I then used 40,000 + new tax charge for the new ticket.

 

I wore my loosest baseball cap back and the check-in desk did not ask me to remove it.

 

The airport appears to be undertaking improvements to the security section which at the time was about 150 people deep with holidaymakers. There were a lot of irate first class ticket holders wondering where the fast track was.

 

I looked to see what all the other people with hats were doing. Some took theirs off while going through the detectors while some didn't. The ones that didn't were asked to take it off and show the inside of the hat afterwards. You won't be surprised to read that I took the second option.

 

I actually said to the female guard (who was actually young and good looking): "excuse the appearance of my hair!" and it was all done in about 5 seconds.

 

The BA business class lounge had a huge ice tray so I was able to do a bit of icing with a couple of ziplock bags.

 

On the plane I picked a rear facing window seat which was nice and secluded once they dimmed the lights. Just watch your head on the luggage compartments. It was a 7.5hr overnight flight departing 5:15pm and landing 645am London Heathrow. I did a bit more icing mid-flight thanks to the stewardesses.

 

I kept all the meds in hand luggage with a small spray bottle with Saline - although I didnt bother using it during the flight.

Edited by 1978matt

4,312 FUT grafts (7,676 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2013

1,145 FUE grafts (3,152 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2018

763 FUE grafts (2,094 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - January 2020

Proscar 1.25mg every 3rd day

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Great choice in docs...love his work. Very clean and great looking hairline design. Now all you need to do is wait. Not fun, but once this grows out, you will love the result.

 

Thank you for the write-up and quick question for you, Did he ever say way it was difficult for the grafts to hold?

 

Look forward to following your progress!

My initial HT thread:

done and done!! Check it out...

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Great choice in docs...love his work. Very clean and great looking hairline design. Now all you need to do is wait. Not fun, but once this grows out, you will love the result.

 

Thank you for the write-up and quick question for you, Did he ever say way it was difficult for the grafts to hold?

 

Look forward to following your progress!

 

Thanks Eman. I think you and I had similar procedures.

 

He said due to everyones individual characteristics you never quite know how it is going to pan out until you get started. Some people can be a breeze and the grafts just stay in place and there is not much blood. Others require only one shot of anestesia which lasts virtually the entire procedure, whereas I think I needed a few top ups which slows things down.

 

The following day he did a 2,500 graft case and was done by about 1pm.

4,312 FUT grafts (7,676 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2013

1,145 FUE grafts (3,152 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2018

763 FUE grafts (2,094 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - January 2020

Proscar 1.25mg every 3rd day

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subscribing to this thread. great logging of the experience and the work looks great. looking forward to seeing the progression of the healing and eventual growth.

 

did the heatwave in chicago effect your comfort at all post op?

 

No problems with the heat but it was good to be in an airconditioned hotel. It had been very humid in the UK in the lead up but much fresher in Chicago despite the slightly higher temperatures.

4,312 FUT grafts (7,676 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2013

1,145 FUE grafts (3,152 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2018

763 FUE grafts (2,094 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - January 2020

Proscar 1.25mg every 3rd day

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What did konior think about you only taking propecia once every 5 days? And want is your reason for doing so?

 

We didn't discuss it. Uusally I take it and it gives me a minor headache for about 12hrs and then subsides away but can occasionally linger for a day and a half. So I take it at night. I just believe that something is better than nothing and it is reducing DHT levels to a certain degree.

4,312 FUT grafts (7,676 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2013

1,145 FUE grafts (3,152 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2018

763 FUE grafts (2,094 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - January 2020

Proscar 1.25mg every 3rd day

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yeah, that makes sense. however propecia leaves your system in 24 hours. I just started taking it every other day instead of everyday myself. I agree, a little DHT supression is better than none...although thats not based on any scientific studies that I know of :)

 

did konior do any shampooing of your recipeint area before you left?

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yeah, that makes sense. however propecia leaves your system in 24 hours. I just started taking it every other day instead of everyday myself. I agree, a little DHT supression is better than none...although thats not based on any scientific studies that I know of :)

 

did konior do any shampooing of your recipeint area before you left?

 

The DHT inhibitation lasts for several days though. See the link in my signature.

 

His techs did the clean ups each day. No idea what they used but Saline and ointment (on the scar) featured heavily. I did my own shampooing from the 3rd day with a light shower mist and baby shampoo. I didn't touch the grafts but they looked so secure I didn't worry about them. They give you detailed post op instuctions.

4,312 FUT grafts (7,676 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2013

1,145 FUE grafts (3,152 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - August 2018

763 FUE grafts (2,094 hairs) with Ray Konior, MD - January 2020

Proscar 1.25mg every 3rd day

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Hi Matt,

 

I really like your hairline design and think it's great that Dr Konior felt confident to go a little bit more aggressive. One question. Did Dr K discuss density of the grafts in the hairline and behind and how he planned to design your HT in this regard. I'm in the UK so it's great to have such a detailed write up from some one who has travelled across the pond, as most traffic seems to be in the direction of Belgium these days!

Edited by Koot
typo
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