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Dr Bisanga-3501 FUE

W

Welwyn

member
Hi to everyone,

I thought Id share my story with you all. Im 56 years old, it was now or never!

I started losing my hair around 20 years ago. At first i didn’t do too much about it, which I realised now was a big mistake. After 10 years of being in denial, I kept seeing adverts on TV about the Belgravia centre in London. Im sure many of you will have heard of them. Funny how we dont see any adverts from them on the TV anymore. I remember I booked an appointment with them, and at the time, they seemed to know what they were talking about. They sold me a years supply of Propecia and Minoxidil and that was the next step in my journey. The first year I did see quite a good improvement. My crown started to fill in and my hairline seemed to begin to thicken up quite a bit too.

After the first year I never really noticed any further improvement but continued to use them hoping that I would. I continued with this for around 7 years. But then I discovered the forums and started to watch a lot of videos on youtube and realised I was wasting a lot of money. At one point they even changed from brand name Propecia to generic finasteride without any communication or change in price. I decided to stop using them and found much cheaper alternatives.

I then began using Proscar which was to my surprise much cheaper. I supplemented that with minoxidil which contained 0.1% finasteride from the USA which was great, but actually turned out very expensive as I was getting charged shipping tax on top of the cost of the product.
I eventually decided to switch to minoxidil 5% twice per day. I did get a big shed initially, especially to my hairline which never really recovered. That was when I began to use hair fibres to cover my loss. Applying minoxidil twice per day and spending a good amount of time each and every morning applying fibres, it all got too much. I finally decided to take the plunge and get a hair transplant.

I didn’t really consider Turkey as I had heard many bad stories on the forums, although it would have obviously been a lot cheaper. As I was in a fortunate position, I decided that I would take a career break of 6-12 months and move to Cyprus. My initial thinking was that as I would be in Cyprus would make sense to have my hair transplant in either Cyprus or Greece. I went on holiday to Cyprus to visit my parents last September and visited HDC clinic. They had some very good results on the forums, but for some reason they just didn’t seem to feel quite right for me.

I also spoke with DHI in Athens and Dr Anastasakis, but again it just didn’t feel right for me.

At this point, I also got in touch with BHR in Athens and spoke to their consultant Ian. I found him very helpful and he took a lot of time to explain things and over several months we spoke a lot. I would often keep him on the phone for a long time with various questions. He never at any point pressured me into going with BHR. He was very pleasant and polite at all times and had a lot of patience. He arranged for me to have a consultation with Dr Bisanga in London in December of last year. I went along and Dr Bisanga explained that I would need approximately 3500 grafts. 2500 grafts in the front and 1000 grafts into the crown. To be honest after meeting him, my mind was made up. I really wanted to have the procedure done in February, but Dr Bisanga was not available in Athens until March. This gave me three months to get everything organised after my consultation. That included leaving my job, finding my accommodation in Cyprus which wasn’t too difficult to be honest as my parents are living there.
I moved to Cyprus on 12th March, booked my flights and accommodation to Athens from Paphos which was convenient as it was only one and a half hours flight. Surgery was scheduled on March 25th and 26th. But then arrived the coronavirus!!!

On the 18th, I received a dreaded call from my accommodation in Athens, explaining that they had to cancel my stay with them as they were forced to close down. So I tried to find alternative accommodation but the very next day my flights were also cancelled and after speaking with Ian, he explained that BHR Athens had to temporary close due to government restrictions in Greece and the closing of all private clinics due to the virus.

It was terrible news for me! But thankfully Dr Bisanga kindly offered that if I could get to Brussels for March 23rd, he would perform surgery in Brussels whilst honouring the same price that we agreed in Athens. Myself and Ian found travel options to fly into Brussels via Germany. The day that we initially found them. they were priced at €200 return. The following day when we checked again, prices had gone up to almost €2000.
So I immediately called my travel agent whom I always use, as personally I dont like booking flights online. I much prefer to speak directly with a person. My travel agent managed to get me a flight from Cyprus to Heathrow on March 20th, and then found a seat on the Eurostar to Brussels on the 21st. I then booked myself into travel lodge for one night in London and took the Eurostar to Brussels the following day. All this for a hair transplant!!! But as I said, it was now or never for me.
I finally arrived in Brussels and was collected by a driver arranged by Dr Bisanga. He dropped my at my accommodation which was only 200 metres away fro the clinic, which i booked on booking .com and it was a very nice place and the hosts were great.

I met with the Doctor on the Sunday so that we could get things moving and to not waste any further time on Monday morning, the day of surgery. The original plan was to receive 3500 grafts over two days, but due to the risk of the clinic being closed due to Coronavirus and government restrictions at any day, Dr Bisanga decided it best to complete surgery in one day.

I arrived on Monday at 7am. Dr Bisanga shaved my head straight away. I received the injections and we began immediately with the procedure. His team of technicians were fantastic with so much experience. One of the girls had been with him for over 11 years and another for over 4 years. There were 3 girls in the team. All who were very nice and friendly. We didn’t finish until almost 8pm.

I stayed in Brussels until 29th so that I could have a rest and try and relax after all of the stress of getting there. When I look back, I dont know how I didn’t just throw in the towel.

I am so happy and relieved that I saw it through and would like to personally thank Dr Bisanga for offering me the opportunity for having surgery performed in Brussels.
I ending up receiving 3501 grafts with the following graft breakdown.
1 - 401
2 - 1649
3 - 1247
4 - 204
Total hairs 8256
Average hair count per follicular unit 2,358

Ian kindly offered to add photos from my surgery day, so he will post them below.
Thank you
 
Raphael84

Raphael84

Valued member
Note - The resolution of the images had to be lowered quite significantly to be uploaded

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Raphael84

Raphael84

Valued member
Thanks for the great write up Welwyn. We all appreciate you taking the time to do so. Your story doesn't even begin to explain the lengths that you went to, to ensure that you made it to Brussels. I know how motivated you were to do so, and nobody deserves it more than you.

Thanks for your kind words. Im looking forward to the next several months and Im very pleased for you.

Stay patient and grow well!
 
M

martin

member
Great thanks for sharing information about FUE hair transplant surgery. Great results.
 
bullitnut

bullitnut

4 awesome repairs with SMG
This is going to be one of them awesome results everyone is envious of...you have good hair characteristics. So glad you managed to get your surgery done it must be such a weight off your mind. Glad Dr Bisanga managed to fit you in at Brussels......on a side note that flight process increase is scandalous my friend.

Please please update us with this one as I'm very excited to see how this unfolds with your wavy/curly hair characteristics.

Best wishes and stay safe pal

BN
 
W

Welwyn

member
Hi everyone hope you are all good
I woke up this morning and Donor area is very itchy
Trying best not to rub it any advice would be much appreciated
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
Hi Welwyn. Welcome to the forum and thanks for sharing your story.
What a journey to get your hair transplant, as Bullitnut says, airlines taking advantage of the situation and hiking the prices up is scandalous. Anyhow, you worked it out with Ian and Dr Bisanga which was a nice achievement.
You got a decent number of grafts with an excellent hair count. Your curly/wavy hair characteristics will help greatly in achieving a great result.
The FUE extractions look nice and spread out, not uniform lines either around the edges of the donor area which will help everything blend in once your hair grows. As for the itching, try Aloe Vera gel. It's available in most chemists and supermarkets which are still open so you should have no problem getting it.
Certain establishments make a fortune from charging way over the odds for meds and laser treatments. Glad you realised this and found a better deal.
Now you just have to be patient and wait for those new hairs to grow.
All the best.
Bm.
 
Raphael84

Raphael84

Valued member
Hi Welwyn

I hope itchiness is not causing you too much frustration or discomfort today.

Regarding any itchiness in your donor area, further details and information covering all post op factors including itchiness were covered in the post op email "post surgery tips".

Just to reiterate regarding itchiness in your donor -

This is normal as the donor heals and sheds skin in the early phases, but this sensation can also remain due to the scalp being somewhat dry, but will improve in the ensuing months post surgery. Follow post op instructions, and after the first week, you can massage the donor area well to shed any dead skin and can apply aloe vera or similar moisturiser, vitamin E etc.

Ill contact you privately and see how you are getting on.
 
Last edited:
Kevboy

Kevboy

member
Any type of wound can create an itch whilst it heals. The little holes will be pulling together, creating small scabs that react well to moisturisers like Aloe. E45 anti itch cream works great if your doctor says it’s ok to use it.
 
PaddyIrishman1

PaddyIrishman1

member
Great write up. Well done on your efforts to get your HT done, it must have been stressful. Itching is normal and part and parcel of the process. Bigmac gave you good advice with the aloe Vera gel. I used it myself and found it very good . If you use an organic brand all the better. Sit back now and relax, Happy Growing.
Paddy
 
W

Welwyn

member
Thanks bigmac kevboy and paddy for the advice I used alone vera seemed to work for me I will be posting 3 week update soon
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
Hi Welwyn. Everything looks to have healed nicely and looks on track at 3 weeks post op. The frontal redness may linger for some time, the Aloe helps with that too.
Good to hear the itching has subsided somewhat. One thing I forgot to mention is when I suffered itching I placed a cold damp flannel on the area which helped a lot. Sometimes the urge to scratch is irresistible but try your best not too as it only inflames it further.
 
W

Welwyn

member
Thanks big mac for your advice aloe vera has really helped itching seems so much better but I will continue to use for the redness I cant believe I'm already at four weeks
 
Raphael84

Raphael84

Valued member
Thanks for the update Welwyn.
You are exactly where you should be at this stage.
Great to hear that the itchiness has improved.
Also very pleased to hear that the first 4 weeks have gone quickly for you. This is always the best way in those first months, trying not to obsess or spend every waking hour in front of the mirror.
Lets hope the next several months pass just as quickly for you. I for one am looking forward to following your growth.
 
W

Welwyn

member
My four week update time has gone really quick surprisingly the shedding has now stopped I do think I've lost quite a lot of transplanted hair I've started using a laser comb now without the artificial teeth. I still can't decide whether to use minoxidil 5% opinions would be appreciated.

Dr Bisanga hair transplant.jpeg
BHR Clinic hair transplant.jpg
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
Everything looks good at 4 weeks. Good to hear the itching has gone or not much of an issue now. The Aloe is good stuff, helps with Sunburn too. But do keep your head out the Sun with the hot weather we`re experiencing.
If you start Minoxidil, it`s a lifelong commitment if you`re wanting to use it to stimulate dormant follicles. Once you quit, you lose anything gained. Lots of patients do use it to help the transplanted grafts grow quicker, it may or may not help, everyone reacts differently to it.
The 2% is quite mild, so less chance of irritation. If you`re going to use it, I would probably use the 5% in your shoes.
 
W

Welwyn

member
Thanks big mac for your advice much appreciated.
I'm still unsure whether to use minoxidil 5%
I've got 4 months supply sitting on the shelf
I've been using it for the last ten years so makes a nice change not to use it I'm going to be cutting my donor area using clippers on Sunday for the first time since my transplant hopefully I won't make a mess of it i will be posting some photos if I don't mess it up
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
Were you applying the minoxidil once or twice per day? Maybe just apply it an hour before bedtime and wash out in the morning.
Good luck with the hair cut, I think it should be easy enough to have the donor area all unform but blending it into the hair on top may be a bit more challenging.
 
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