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Lupanzola 2800 grafts FUE

Cairnsicus

Cairnsicus

member
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#1
Hi everyone, I thought I’d share my recent experience of a HT with Dr Lupanzola in Brussels.

Just as a disclaimer - all opinions here are my own - I really want to give an unvarnished - but very fair - account of my experience up until this point. You’re not going to be given a gushing Ebay review type account of my experiences :)

I’m 40 and first started noticing hair loss (like a lot of people) at 19 in a top lit bathroom mirror. Cue 20 odd years of angst, slow hairline loss and various different hairstyles attempting to hide the inevitable. I was an approx Norwood 3a before my transplant.

I started getting serious about trying to do something about it in 2004 when I had old school Laser light therapy at the Advanced Hair Studio in central London. I schlepped up to London from the South Coast to sit under what looked like an old fashioned perm machine your granny used for an hour each Saturday for a couple of months. Those guys were (and I’m sure probably still are) a bunch of total muppets- high pressure salesman, expensive and just rubbish. £750 down the drain there.

I’ve dabbled in generic fin, minoxidil and more recently Propecia (which I didn’t get along with at all - but that’s another story) - it’ll be topical fin starting a month after surgery.

18 months ago I started doing some research about getting a HT done.. Inevitably searching for HT resulted in shit loads of insta and FB adverts for clinics in Turkey, I did some research around that - and was impressed with some results.

I like a bit of research - so I went further down the rabbit hole, I started watching youtube vids by people like Matt Dominance, hairliciously and David DiMuzio. It struck me that there’s something not quite congruent about these guys videos - I didn’t (and don’t) buy what they’re selling (and of course they’re selling hard!)

Then I discovered Joe Tillman’s channel, being a video producer I found some of the editing effects(and sound effects) on his videos a bit suspect - but the content seemed reasoned, solid and totally reasonable and he taught me a lot about the industry - it all made sense.

From that I discovered the Bald Truth radio show and became a bit of an addict - playing GTA5 racing (seriously, even after 5 years it’s the bomb) and listening to the show for hours on end. I’ve now listened to a few dozen hours of Joe and sweary Spencer (my girlfriend coined that one - she has had to listen to plenty of swearing from their show),which has taught me a lot. I’ve also enjoyed Kobren’s ranting about the industry, week in, week out.

Through this education I learned that Turkey really isn’t the answer and that truly good HT surgeons are a rare commodity indeed. Thankfully through Spencer’s IAHRS and Joe’s recommended surgeon’s there’d be a reasonable choice of surgery options if I decided to do it (don’t have surgery! they’d say of course!)

But then my cynicism kicks in...is the whole Tillman/Kobren thing too perfect? Why would these guys jump on air twice a week to listen to insecure men moan about hair loss and wood problems?

Having a background in sales I figured out pretty quickly it’s not totally altruistic and that they both operate highly informative (and very white hat) sales funnels. Which means they operate in a more cuddly and informative way than all of the other Youtubers and internet marketers with their links to discounts, e-books and favoured clinics.

Of course ultimately I’m cool with that, as they’ve carefully cultivated a group of HT doctors that they’ve audited and are prepared to stake their reputations to recommend. The fact is these guys have many years experience and know the industry back to front.

I had consults with three IAHRS members - Lupanzola being the third. I’d enjoyed Joe’s series of vids with the doc and had a good meeting with he and his client liaison guy Scott at the consult at a hotel at St Pancras in London.

Perhaps the swaying factor for choosing Lupanzola (or lollapalooza as the girlf calls him - sorry doc!) was having a good old rummage through Scott’s recently transplanted hair. He was at that point, six months post op - and his highly hirsute look is pretty incredible… As a poster boy Scott is a fantastic advert for Lup’s skills - I’d recommend having a look at his results (which I dare say are posted somewhere on this forum)

After at least a decade of surfing forums and clinics websites - I took the plunge and travelled out to Brussels a few Saturdays ago.

I spent a few days in Belgium with girlfriend before the surgery. We mooched around Brussels (the chocolate museum is by far the best thing to do there) and went on a day trip to Bruge - which was a lot of fun.

A few things about Brussels… Firstly it’s not Rome.. or Paris, London or Berlin. It’s quite a small city with not much to do there.. It’s all waffles, beer, chocolate and Tintin. Don’t expect to have your bollocks blown off by the place.

We had fun - the biggest issue for me being on strict instructions to not drink any booze - in perhaps the beer capital of the World. Seriously it’s a fucking nightmare sitting there like a monk drinking mocktails whilst everyone else is getting lathered on amazing 8% beers!

In Brussels - BEWARE the trams.. You need to get tickets to ride the trams - but for some reason they don’t have ticket machines at tram stops and you can’t buy a ticket on the tram. You buy tix in shops and at the VERY occasional machine at a major station. (the only one we found in our WHOLE stay was at Brussels Midi station.)

I say this because we were “busted” by a conductor without tickets and he was about to issue 2 x 200EUR fines to us - before he got distracted, jumped off and the tram mercifully drove off without him on it!

Anyway! Onto the surgery. Girlfriend left on the Eurostar on the Tues in floods of tears - thinking I’d die on the surgery table (or something)

I was expected to be at the clinic at 6:30 the next day - so I got an early night. Next morning I was traipsing through the dark streets of a foreign capital… I don’t mind admitting thinking (not for the first time) “what the HELL am I doing??”

I arrived at the clinic, had a nice chat with the doc (who seemed much more awake than me - thank god). He shaved my head, drew the hairline and had me in the operating theatre toot suite.

As far as hairlines are concerned, I’m very much keen on the conservative - I think it’s absurd to build a new low hairline for a 40 year old. I just think it will look even more stupid in another 20 years. All good with Lup.

I was to have @2800 grafts in front third of my head.

I’ve never had surgery before - I can’t say I’d recommend the administration of local anaesthesia as a fun morning out. It’s pretty painful (4 out of ten I’d say) like having a particularly sadistic cat scratch you over and over. Lup was very conscious I was comfortable and when the anaesthesia was sorted - the couple of hours of extractions on my belly was pretty painless (and very dull)

He extracted approx 1400 grafts from the back of my head, after which he drilled (technical term?) the recipient holes for his techs to place on my head. All this part is fine. The best bit about being flipped into a normal seated position was there was a nice big TV in front of me to watch. I put on Rick and Morty which made the time pass a lot quicker!

The whole surgery experience is pretty bizarre, but all credit to Lup and his team - everything seemed to be done with clockwork precision and highly professionally.

I left after lunch - I returned the next day early again to have more extractions from the side of the head. These would be the famous single grafts which will make up the front of my hairline. Hopefully I’m not going to look like Gareth Gates or that bloke from West Life.

Second day was all fine - aside from one of Lup’s techs suffering from 10 minutes of tickly throat syndrome. Just as well they are so on point with face masks and gloves etc. No issues at all. They bought me lunch and I headed off.

I stayed one last day after the surgery. My head, still soaked in anaesthetic, felt like I had a crash helmet on. Being 6’6” wasn’t too much fun either - I was warned about banging my head or even touching my recipient area. I must have (lightly) grazed it or touched it accidentally about once every 9 hours in the first week - infuriating!!. As far as I can see, I’ve only lost one graft from my clumsiness - but it’s a bloody nightmare and you feel like you’ve ruined everything every time it happens!

Since my return to the UK, it’s been really interesting seeing things develop. As of today - 7 days post op.. I’m struggling to even see any redness in the donor zone - that’s repairing really well. I do a lot of sport - which Lup tells me helps the repair process along.

The recipient area is looking good too. I started gently washing it with his shampoo today.. Hardly any redness there either. Which is pretty remarkable as one of the dudes at my martial arts gym had a HT a few months ago - and his recipient area is still red!

I had the tiniest bit of swelling above my left eyebrow on day 4… that quickly went.. Girlfriend and I were a little disappointed I didn’t turn into the Elephant man for a bit… I guess that’s another plus point for the doc though!

When I compare my results to the likes of Matt Dominance’s at the same point post surgery I’m very impressed. Girlfriend can’t even watch Matt D’s videos right after surgery - his head looks like turf ploughed by a tractor with blunt blades. She had no issues looking at my recip area.

It’s always very difficult to review a product I won’t actually properly see for another year or so - but based on my experience so far - I’m very impressed with Dr Lupenzola and the Medikemos set up. My only real moan is that - typically - the Pound is now at a 5 month high against the Euro - days after I paid my balance :/

Of course now is the waiting game - happy to keep posting pics of my progress - nice to be able to share my experience on here!

1 hair 449
2 hairs 1487
3 hairs 876
4 hairs 49

Total 2861
 

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Lukey13

member
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#2
Fantastic write-up Cairnsicus, having just had my own procedure at Medikemos I will be keeping an eye on your thread buddy, looks like your about a week ahead of me I think..
Going to start my own thread once I get home, I'm leaving Brussels to head home today after finishing up my procedure on Friday and having my dressings removed and first wash done by the doctor yesterday.
I had 3622 grafts across my procedure and I must say my experience at the clinic has been none other than excellent :)

Exciting times ahead... Hopefully we will both experience similar great results!
 
Cairnsicus

Cairnsicus

member
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#3
Cheers Luke!

How did you find Brussels?

Did Lup do 3600 over a full day and a half?

Look forward to seeing your write up
 
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Lukey13

member
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#4
Fast reply! Yeh we found Brussels great, but what is the deal with the trams and no ticket machines??! Lol

The good thing about it is it's not too big anyway so we got around pretty easily and we've had some great food here too.
I agree with you also the chocolate museum was great my girlfriend and I actually really enjoyed that!
We walked around the town, got waffles etc, and yeh it would have been great to have been able to have a beer haha
But like you I've been strict on myself and had zero alcohol too as instructed!


Correct buddy my surgery was spread across 2 days of pretty big sessions as you will know the doctor has a lot of work to do!
Having now had my op I completely agree with the ethos of not having multiple techs hammering out 5000 grafts in huge single sessions and am much happier with the way Dr Lupanzula works.
I feel much happier knowing this was the approach that I decided on and that it's the way Dr Lupanzula works too, it really makes even more sense now that I'm this side of my procedure.
 
Scott Medikemos

Scott Medikemos

Valued member
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#6
Thanks Cairnsicus for the thorough and refreshingly honest testimonial.

I look forward to seeing your progress over the coming months.
 
Scott Medikemos

Scott Medikemos

Valued member
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#7
Fast reply! Yeh we found Brussels great, but what is the deal with the trams and no ticket machines??! Lol

The good thing about it is it's not too big anyway so we got around pretty easily and we've had some great food here too.
I agree with you also the chocolate museum was great my girlfriend and I actually really enjoyed that!
We walked around the town, got waffles etc, and yeh it would have been great to have been able to have a beer haha
But like you I've been strict on myself and had zero alcohol too as instructed!


Correct buddy my surgery was spread across 2 days of pretty big sessions as you will know the doctor has a lot of work to do!
Having now had my op I completely agree with the ethos of not having multiple techs hammering out 5000 grafts in huge single sessions and am much happier with the way Dr Lupanzula works.
I feel much happier knowing this was the approach that I decided on and that it's the way Dr Lupanzula works too, it really makes even more sense now that I'm this side of my procedure.
Thanks Lukey 13, looking forward to seeing your progress.
 
V

Viking

member
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#10
Loved reading your account detailing your experience. Your new hair shape is perfect, did you take the photographs or the clinic they are very good.
 
Cairnsicus

Cairnsicus

member
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#11
Loved reading your account detailing your experience. Your new hair shape is perfect, did you take the photographs or the clinic they are very good.
Thanks Viking! appreciate your feedback :)

The blue background photos were taken by one of the Lup's technicians in the OR

The rest are me
 
Cairnsicus

Cairnsicus

member
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#12
Hi folks

14 day update... Finally coming to the end of the self imposed exile and daily isobetadine hair washes..! thank f**k!

Had a decent amount of shed already.. ugly duckling stage here we come..

Looking forward to donning (loose fitting) flat cap and going to the pub this weekend..!
 

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Prohairclinic

Prohairclinic

Prohairclinic FUE and SMP
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#13
Looks top notch!
I am truly happy that in regards to high quality FUE hair transplantation Belgium is still the place to be!
 
Scott Medikemos

Scott Medikemos

Valued member
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#14
Thanks for the update Cairnsicus, the healing process is well and truly underway illustrating Dr. Lupanzula's refined technique.
 
Cairnsicus

Cairnsicus

member
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#15
Hi all - here's a 1 month update..

Everything seems to be going good.. I had a break out of ache below my hairline a few weeks ago. I figure this is from wearing a flat cap who's rim needed a clean! that's all cleared up now

The donor zone is looking pretty much back to normal now.. I'll keep trimming the back and sides with my clippers for a while yet.

The grafts are starting to pop through a little bit now.. I'm supplementing with biotin to hopefully chip things along a bit quicker. The longer hair is my old hair popping through!
 

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Scott Medikemos

Scott Medikemos

Valued member
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#16
Thanks for the update Cairnsicus, everything is looking good and you're healing nicely. Looking forward to seeing your progress over the coming months.