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Speegs

Let's Discuss Texas Area Doctors

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Hello all,

 

Let us discuss Texas based surgeons as i think it is fair to say the second most populace state in the union likely contains a plurality of the hair loss sufferers in the country along with California.

 

It is surprising to me that Texas is not better versed in known talent especially since the state boasts some of the most enviable medical research and hospitals on planet earth. You'd think a state at the forefront of the fight against cancer would be easily in stride with a seemingly trivial cosmetic surgery in comparison, alas not so it appears.

 

That is not a dig at the known commodities but rather a lament at the scarcity of reliable and artistically savvy performers in this field.

 

That said let me share with you my consultations with FOUR Texas based doctors and I welcome feed back and opining from all with experience with any and feel free to add to the list:

 

I am a norwood 3 hairloss sufferer, a classic receding hairline and fading forelock density, I look like a Jude Law clone, but at 25 years of age I'd rather not look like the 35 year old actor.

 

My in-state consultations first took me to Dr. Berardo Arocha in River Oaks, Houston; he was a soft spoken man who sized me up, drew a respectable hairline, took photographs and quoted me a 2,500 graft job that would run 10K to 12K he said.

 

Next I stayed in my backyard, simply out of curiosity and of no research, it took me to Dr. Carlos Puig in Katy, Texas, just West of Houston in the suburbs.

 

His consultant was kind and forward but some of their "honesty" was actually disconcerting, as if they were low balling their own expertise and trying to lower expectations of what was achievable. They said 10% graft ungrowth was inevitable, they hinted a displeasure with megasessions and although never used names it seemed to point directly at the surgeon I consulted with prior to them. I was turned off when they disclosed they were formerly MHR based, though interestingly enough so was Dr.Arocha at one point. Ultimately they offered 1400-1600 grafts at 7k but would lower it to 5700 if I did it the following Tuesday to fill a slot. I declined.

 

Next I drove to Austin and met with an energetic and kind doctor named Dan McGrath, a hair transplant patient himself.

He was kind and to the point, he too expressed a discomfort with doing megasessions on a norwood 3 case and estimated 1500-1800 grafts at 6k price tag. My lone complaint with him was on his website, his hairline on the web looks dense and full, in person although he is far from bald his hairline can be seen through a couple of inches. Granted obviously didn't operate on himself but his hair on his website is fuller than in person. I think he too has an MHR background.

 

Finally, just yesterday i did the most unlikely thing, I called Hair Club, not for any other reason than the fact Dr. Robert McClellan, formerly of NHI in LA under Dr. Ramsann, now works there. I frustratingly sat through the sales consultation just to get to see Dr. Robert McClellan ; he came to see me after a surgery.

he was a blunt but honest fellow, sized me up, drew a similar hairline that all three previous men had and recommended 1500 grafts.

The price was way more however because of the Hair Club middle men, 5.50 per graft plus 1,200 for after surgery therapy they promised would prevent shock loss and stimulate quicker growth of transplanted hair, aprrox 9k in all for the procedure. Too much for 1500 grafts was my opinion, I could get 1000 more for another grand.

 

So in the end these were the four doctors I have consulted with to date, Puig I don't trust.

McGrath is on the fence for me, I'm confused by Arocha's 2500 recommendation when three other physicians without fail were against that, even though it would've made more money for them.

 

And Hair Club was jacking up the prices of McClellan who is good but not worth 9k for 1500 grafts.

 

Out of those four if i had to choose today I'd go with McGrath but I'm not choosing today, I'm still exploring, I am having a hard time shaking the notion all these men have a past with big chains like MHR, any thoughts?


Hair loss patient and transplant veteran. Once a Norwood 3A.

Received 2,700 grafts with coalition doctor on 8/13/2010

Received 2,380 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 9/30/2011

Received 1,820 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 7/28/2016

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I haven't forgotten Limmer, just haven't had the time to go see him.

 

It seems that everyone in Texas has a past association with MHR or is currently chained to Hair Club.

 

Obviously just because a surgeon trained with and worked for MHR doesn't disqualify them but its difficult to vet them because of the prejudice that surrounds the large companies and the mixed bag reputation they carry.

 

Both McGrath and Arocha worked for MHR and they represent two opposing camps of tackling a norwood three, one is against a megasession for the preservation of more grafts. The other thinks he can place 2500 into a place three other physicians advised against.

 

Its a real pickle to make a good decision about that, regardless of what physician is chosen.


Hair loss patient and transplant veteran. Once a Norwood 3A.

Received 2,700 grafts with coalition doctor on 8/13/2010

Received 2,380 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 9/30/2011

Received 1,820 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 7/28/2016

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No, camera is out of whack. I'm a norwood three with thinning in the frontal forelock.


Hair loss patient and transplant veteran. Once a Norwood 3A.

Received 2,700 grafts with coalition doctor on 8/13/2010

Received 2,380 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 9/30/2011

Received 1,820 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 7/28/2016

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Depending on how dense you would like, a 2,500 for the front 1/3 will give you decent density, depending on forelock. 1,500 would be somewhat thin. This of course depends on where the hairline is placed, temples, forelock density, hair count and characteristics, etc.

Still, without a pic, I'm kinda guessing blindly.

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Originally posted by Leeson:

Depending on how dense you would like, a 2,500 for the front 1/3 will give you decent density, depending on forelock. 1,500 would be somewhat thin. This of course depends on where the hairline is placed, temples, forelock density, hair count and characteristics, etc.

Still, without a pic, I'm kinda guessing blindly.

All I've got are four doctor opinions.

 

2500

1400-1600

1500-1800

1500-1600

 

Respectively, personally I think 1800-2000 would probably do it but that's just me crunching numbers after a year of looking at on-line photos and going to consultations.

 

It may well require 2500, but when three out of four doctors are proposing 1000 less than that it makes you stop and think.


Hair loss patient and transplant veteran. Once a Norwood 3A.

Received 2,700 grafts with coalition doctor on 8/13/2010

Received 2,380 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 9/30/2011

Received 1,820 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 7/28/2016

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I've heard of McClellan only by researching NHI in 2002; never saw any of his work. Two others, I've never heard of before. Dr. Arocha has put up some impressive work, and I would be more inclined to give his recommendation credence over the others.

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Speegs, is there are reason you are unwilling to travel out of Texas?

 

Anyway, a good rule of thumb is to multiply your NW level by 1000-- so in your case a NW3 would need 3000 grafts--however, because you still retain some thinning native hair, that is where the 2000-2500 from Dr. Arocha probably comes in.

 

The other clinics are not able to do work much over 25 fu cm/2 and quite honestly, you should contact Pat personally about one of the names on your list. I am not a liberty to discuss that topic.

 

However, if you are not satisfied with your findings there, a drive to Dr. Alexander or Dr. Keene in AZ is possible.

 

Lastly, if your concerned about the disparity of graft totals, post your pics online or simply consult with other top clinics to get a better feel. I believe most will be around the same # as Dr. Arocha.

 

Take Care,

Jason


Go Cubs!

 

6721 transplanted grafts

13,906 hairs

Performed by Dr. Ron Shapiro

 

Dr. Ron Shapiro and Dr. Paul Shapiro are members of the Coalition of Independent Hair Restoration Physicians.

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+1 to what Bspot said. I'd wager celibacy for the next decade that every doctor mentioned -- Arocha aside -- is a hack and that their skills and graft-quote would leave you sorely dissatisfied. MPB sucks, and HTs are very imperfect; you really can't afford to go to anyone aside from a truly elite doc/clinic, and give yourself the best shot of at the very least meeting your expectations.


-----------

 

*A Follicles Dying Wish To Clinics*

 

1 top-down, 1 portrait, 1 side-shot, 1 hairline....4 photos. No flash.

 

Follicles have asked for centuries, in ten languages, as many times so as to confuse a mathematician.

 

Enough is enough! Give me documentation or give me death!

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Originally posted by the B spot:

Speegs, is there are reason you are unwilling to travel out of Texas?

 

Anyway, a good rule of thumb is to multiply your NW level by 1000-- so in your case a NW3 would need 3000 grafts--however, because you still retain some thinning native hair, that is where the 2000-2500 from Dr. Arocha probably comes in.

 

The other clinics are not able to do work much over 25 fu cm/2 and quite honestly, you should contact Pat personally about one of the names on your list. I am not a liberty to discuss that topic.

 

However, if you are not satisfied with your findings there, a drive to Dr. Alexander or Dr. Keene in AZ is possible.

 

Lastly, if your concerned about the disparity of graft totals, post your pics online or simply consult with other top clinics to get a better feel. I believe most will be around the same # as Dr. Arocha.

 

Take Care,

Jason

I'm willing to travel, i just was researching local first. Who is Pat?

Hair loss patient and transplant veteran. Once a Norwood 3A.

Received 2,700 grafts with coalition doctor on 8/13/2010

Received 2,380 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 9/30/2011

Received 1,820 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 7/28/2016

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Speegs,

 

For a norwood 3, most likely 2500+ grafts will be needed to give you both full coverage and adequate density. The actual number that best suits you will depend on your hair characteristics, available donor hair supply, future risk of hair loss, goals, etc.

 

Hair restoration should be seen as a journey rather than a single procedure. Yes, somes patient may get away with only one procedure, but since hair loss is progressive and unpredictable, future sessions may be needed as time passes. This should be considered when developing a hair restoration plan with your doctor.

 

To see a list of doctors we recommend in TX, click here. To see our standards for recommendation, click here.

 

Be sure to research all physicians you are considering.

 

All the Best,

 

Bill


I am the managing publisher of the Hair Transplant Network, the Hair Loss Learning Center, the Hair Loss Q&A Blog and this Hair Loss Forum. I am also a 4 time hair transplant patient. View my patient hair loss website to view my entire hair restoration journey with photos.

Remember, true beauty radiates from within, not from the skin.

I am not a medical professional and my words should not be taken as medical advice. All opinions and views shared are my own.

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You said that Dr. Arocha quoted you $10,000 to $12,000 for 2,500 grafts, but that is a HUGE difference in price. Which one is it? $10,000 would be a very good price, but $12,000 would be pretty steep if you ask me.

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Originally posted by TC17:

You said that Dr. Arocha quoted you $10,000 to $12,000 for 2,500 grafts, but that is a HUGE difference in price. Which one is it? $10,000 would be a very good price, but $12,000 would be pretty steep if you ask me.

That's just what he said, about 2500 grafts and 10to 12K for the work depending what he did.

Hair loss patient and transplant veteran. Once a Norwood 3A.

Received 2,700 grafts with coalition doctor on 8/13/2010

Received 2,380 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 9/30/2011

Received 1,820 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 7/28/2016

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Greetings to all,

quote:

Originally posted by TC17:

You said that Dr. Arocha quoted you $10,000 to $12,000 for 2,500 grafts, but that is a HUGE difference in price. Which one is it? $10,000 would be a very good price, but $12,000 would be pretty steep if you ask me.

That's just what he said, about 2500 grafts and 10to 12K for the work depending what he did.

 

 

It's not so much what I did, as when I did it. We were running a special of $4.00 per follicular unit that month. The regular price for FUT through FUSS is $5 per FU for the first 2000, then $4 per FU for any over that at any time. Thank you all for your time and comments.

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Speegs,

 

Dr. Arocha's work is well documented to be very refined and state of the art. He has been posting many examples for over 1??years, often at an early stage of growth. Frankly,I am puzzled by :

 

'Next I drove to Austin and met with an energetic and kind doctor named Dan McGrath, a hair transplant patient himself.

He was kind and to the point, he too expressed a discomfort with doing megasessions on a norwood 3 case and estimated 1500-1800 grafts at 6k price tag. My lone complaint with him was on his website, his hairline on the web looks dense and full, in person although he is far from bald his hairline can be seen through a couple of inches. Granted obviously didn't operate on himself but his hair on his website is fuller than in person. I think he too has an MHR background.'

 

It makes you uncomfortable that he is showing a fuller looking transplant on his website of himself, yet you still are leaning towards him a bit. Well, what's makes you think that he has not embellish the results of his patients?

 

By the way, I have had a hair transplant by Dr. Arocha, and I could not be happier. The procedure went very smooth, with little to no discomfort. Although my hair loss was diffuse, I suffered no shock loss. In fact, I now have a full hair of hair. All the luck to you in your quest of finding your doctor.

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I'm doing my homework milkman, doing it best i can, the reason I bring up McGrath and Arocha is they seem to have nearly identical backgrounds, credentials, certifications, societal membership.

So resumes are nearly twins but they both express a very different opinion about graft survival and I'm trying to see both their opinions. I think both men are ethical.

Basically I'm trying to decide if the argument to have two less than 2000 graft surgeries is prudent or if the more aggressive 2000 plus grafts is warranted (without killing grafts) at once. Yes one session is cheaper and aesthetically more gratifying in a shorter time frame IF the grafts survive but if you are running an unnecessary risk to their survival then it seems better to scale back a few hundred grafts and do it in two rounds rather than waste donor hair and money.

 

I'm discerning the merits of these two arguments and it will take time, I'm not married to choosing wither McGrath or Arocha but they represent the two main camps in contemporary hair restoration procedures.


Hair loss patient and transplant veteran. Once a Norwood 3A.

Received 2,700 grafts with coalition doctor on 8/13/2010

Received 2,380 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 9/30/2011

Received 1,820 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 7/28/2016

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Originally posted by Dr. Bernard Arocha:

Greetings to all,

quote:

Originally posted by TC17:

You said that Dr. Arocha quoted you $10,000 to $12,000 for 2,500 grafts, but that is a HUGE difference in price. Which one is it? $10,000 would be a very good price, but $12,000 would be pretty steep if you ask me.

That's just what he said, about 2500 grafts and 10to 12K for the work depending what he did.

 

 

It's not so much what I did, as when I did it. We were running a special of $4.00 per follicular unit that month. The regular price for FUT through FUSS is $5 per FU for the first 2000, then $4 per FU for any over that at any time. Thank you all for your time and comments.

Dr.Arocha, respectfully since you are here, what is your opinion on graft survival in a megasession? Are you confident in the survival rate of a vast majority of a 2500 graft transplant in a region as small as a norwood 3? Many doctors feel there isn't room for that in a norwood 3 case and that you risk shock loss and graft failure, please advise us how you counter the 40cm2 literature without taking great risks to graft survival, because even if a doctor were to guarantee 90% survival rate that is a lot of wasted grafts in a 2500 session,10% non growth is 250 failed grafts x 5 dollars equals 1250 bucks down the drain and a fair amount of wasted donor supply.

Hair loss patient and transplant veteran. Once a Norwood 3A.

Received 2,700 grafts with coalition doctor on 8/13/2010

Received 2,380 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 9/30/2011

Received 1,820 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 7/28/2016

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Speegs,

We perform everyday what the vast majority of hair restoration surgeons say cannot be done. With over 70% of our patients achieving beyond their expectations for a successful hair restoration. We prove on a daily basis that what they tell you is impossible is the norm in our practice. That is not to say that we cannot perform smaller sessions, it is only common logic that if you can do more, you can do less. None the less, you assume no risk because if you elect to do more or less it is none the less guaranteed that if any follicular units fail to grow we will replace them free of charge. It is that simple.

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Speegs,

 

I always ask the patients if they want to stage the procedure in more that one session. Why would you want more sessions unless it is for budgetary reasons. Remember that over 70% of my patients achieve their goals with only one session if they have the recommended size procedure and treatment.

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Originally posted by Dr. Bernard Arocha:

Speegs,

 

I always ask the patients if they want to stage the procedure in more that one session. Why would you want more sessions unless it is for budgetary reasons. Remember that over 70% of my patients achieve their goals with only one session if they have the recommended size procedure and treatment.

How do you prevent shock loss while dense packing in such a relatively crowded area that still possesses native hair? What do you think graft survival for your megasessions tends to be, say a 2500 case and what density cm2 do you favor in a hairline? How does one keep track of follicular unit growth, does he have to find a graft with an entire bulb to know that a graft fell out?

Hair loss patient and transplant veteran. Once a Norwood 3A.

Received 2,700 grafts with coalition doctor on 8/13/2010

Received 2,380 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 9/30/2011

Received 1,820 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 7/28/2016

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Originally posted by Dr. Bernard Arocha:

Speegs,

 

I always ask the patients if they want to stage the procedure in more that one session. Why would you want more sessions unless it is for budgetary reasons. Remember that over 70% of my patients achieve their goals with only one session if they have the recommended size procedure and treatment.

I forgot to ask, how have your derived the 70% number? I realize personal satisfaction and expectations are largely a personal taste and desire but I was just curious about how you know 70% were one and done so to speak, beyond the fact they didn't come back to you for a second surgery.

Hair loss patient and transplant veteran. Once a Norwood 3A.

Received 2,700 grafts with coalition doctor on 8/13/2010

Received 2,380 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 9/30/2011

Received 1,820 grafts with Dr. Steven Gabel on 7/28/2016

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