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Dr. Jerry Cooley - FUT in 2018 (2,643 grafts) & FUT in 2020 (2,101 grafts)


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Hi all, I have had two excellent FUT hair transplants with Dr. Cooley. It has been 11 months since the second transplant, so I am finally posting a comprehensive review. This forum was immensely helpful for me when I was first considering a transplant. In fact, this is where I found Dr. Cooley. So I hope that my review is helpful to all of you.

1st Transplant (2018) - Age: 26 - Grafts: 2,643

Background Info

My hairline began receding around age 18. By my mid twenties, I was a Norwood 3. I started taking Finasteride at age 24, but I knew that the hair I had lost was gone permanently. While my father and paternal grandfather have no hair loss, my maternal grandfather is totally bald. So I figured my early and substantial hair loss was not a good sign.

I was able to hide my bald temples by styling my hair a certain way, but I was very self-conscious. I was constantly worried about my hair moving out of place such that my hairline would be visible. So I decided to get a hair transplant, and I found Dr. Cooley here. I chose Dr. Cooley because he is one of the most elite hair transplant surgeons in the US and he was within driving distance of my city.

After learning that the procedure would cost at least $10k, I decided to save up the money. This was a challenge in itself and took quite a while, but I was determined to pay cash.

After speaking with Lollie (Dr. Cooley's Patient Coordinator), I went in for a consultation with Dr. Cooley. He recommended an FUT rather than FUE procedure because it would maximize graft yield. I was concerned about scarring, but Dr. Cooley is very experienced with FUTs, so I was willing to take the risk.

The Procedure

The night before the procedure, I checked in to the Hilton Garden Inn where Dr. Cooley's patients stay (near his surgery center). It was very comfortable, and they provided free breakfast plus a shuttle to the surgery center.

The morning of the procedure, I woke up early (around 5:45am) to scrub myself down in the shower with Hibiclens (per Dr. Cooley's prep instructions). At the clinic, I was asked to pick out several movies to watch during the course of the procedure. Then, I took the medications they provided for the procedure: valium, prednisone, and antibiotics. 

Dr. Cooley shaved the area on the line along the back of my head where he would cut the donor strip. The valium made me very relaxed and sleepy, so I ended up dozing off for most of the procedure. The team woke me up for lunch, after which the procedure continued. Once the procedure was over, I went back to the hotel. I meticulously followed Dr. Cooley's post-op care instructions (spraying grafts, keeping them covered, taking required meds, etc.). 


The day after the procedure, I went in for a post-up, where they checked my grafts and carefully washed my hair (felt great!). Having taken the week off from work, I then drove home to rest. 

I continued following Dr. Cooley's post-op care instructions meticulously. I had purchased a bag of the Help Hair protein shake that he recommended, so I also began drinking that daily.

3 weeks post-op, I began to experience shock loss along donor site where the stitches were. The hair there fell out in chunks over a period of days. It was quite terrifying, but Dr. Cooley's team reassured me that this happens sometimes and it would grow back. Thankfully, I had grown my hair out longer prior to the procedure, so I was able to cover it up. And ultimately, the hair there did indeed grow back within about 4-5 months.

3 months post-op, thin wisps of hair began to start growing on my temples.

4 months post-op, wisps of hair began growing more densely.

6 months post-op, my hair was back on my temples in full force. 

2nd Transplant (2020) - Age: 28 - Grafts: 2,101


I was very satisfied with the results from my first procedure. I was no longer worried about hiding my deeply receded temples, and I could style my hair in ways that I liked. However, because I had gotten an FUT, I now had a new worry: haircuts. 

I liked to get a fade-style haircut, but the short length would make my scar visible. This was not a surprise (I knew there would be a scar), and I would tell barbers to be mindful of making the scar visible, but this was a constant issue.

To hide the scar, I tried using Toppik (hair fiber) to cover it, but that did not work well. I ended up buying a women's eyebrow pencil that matched my hair color and used that to color in the scar area. This was a far more effective solution, but the scar was still visible to anyone who looked directly at the back of my head. 

I reached out to Ailene (Dr. Cooley's Clinical Supervisor) to ask for their recommendations regarding scalp micropigmentation—where tiny tattoo dots that match your hair color are used to fill in an FUT scar. Ailene said they advised against this remedy. Instead, she said they could do FUE of about 200-300 grafts and place them in the scar site.

I went to Dr. Cooley's office for a consultation. I explained the scar issue, and I expressed an interest in bringing my hairline down a bit more. He told me that I could do another FUT for my hairline, and that they would do a follow up FUE into the scar for free. I thought this was a fantastic offer, so I got a surgery date and paid my deposit.

The Procedure

The procedure itself was just as smooth as the first. However, this time, I was more awake and able to chat with Dr. Cooley and Ailene during the procedure. They were quite enjoyable to talk with on a personal level!


I meticulously followed Dr. Cooley's post-op care instructions. Thankfully, I had no shock loss this time—possibly because Dr. Cooley used a different kind of stitches. 

Present & Future

9 months post-op, I went in for a visit with Dr. Cooley. He took pictures and video of my fantastic new hairline. He took a look at my scar, and I reiterated that I would like to have it filled in via FUE. Dr. Cooley agreed, and I am now waiting to see when the FUE procedure will happen.

Bottom Line

Dr. Cooley's skilled hands have given me a permanent self-esteem boost that has allowed me to really enjoy my twenties. I highly recommend Dr. Cooley to anyone considering a hair transplant, and I am forever thankful to him and his team.










Edited by 8woofwoof8
added photos
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Great to see, your hair has held up well and looked just as good before your 2nd procedure as it did immediately after it had grown out all those years ago. 

You missed out photos of your results from the 2nd procedure though, would be interested to see how that hairline looks, pretty great I am sure.

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