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Newbie seeking advice

JesterRIP

JesterRIP

Valued member
@Ronnie I saw a guy on YouTube ages ago who had a similar-ish hairline, which might help with expectations, comparison etc.

Have a look for Kevin Pittuck-Bennett

He had 4,500 grafts done in Turkey for around £1,300 (not inc flights) around 2 years ago I think.
 
R

Ronnie

member
Hi Jester

Just watched it through…….what a great watch. The weird thing is when I selected the video, it was already at about 30 mins, so I’d clearly skip-watched it previously but I can’t remember doing!

I’d say this guy pre procedure was almost exactly like I am now, which is extremely encouraging. Also worth noting is how high his forehead is, looking back at older photos of myself I really did have a big old forehead too. I’d be looking to reinstate it at the same level which is important, people evaluating me now might assume I’d be wanting to lower it which is definitely not the case. There’s probably less space to fill than people might be expecting.

My meds arrived conveniently on New Years Eve so I commenced taking them on the 1st Jan which gives a very nicely timed year in which to judge if there is any progress. Obviously I want to see some improvement, but just stabilising my condition would be a great result. It’s become increasingly hard to say whether I’ve stabilised or not, though my expectation is that I’ve continued to lose hair, albeit I’m getting down to the dregs now!

I’ve continued to do a load of research around all this. Dependant on what impact the meds have, it’s clear I might not have enough donor hair to adequately fill in the bald bits. Again, something possibly in my favour is that my hair was never really dense in the first instance. Nevertheless the end result needs to be convincing and this video illustrates perfectly something I’ve been considering, which is that I might need to settle for a slightly compromised outcome and where he has landed is exactly what I’ve been thinking. That is, having a nice convincing look from the front, but a bit of a baldy situation still from behind. TBH if that was the compromise I was facing then that would be acceptable to me. Honestly, the thing that hits me on a daily basis is when I look in the mirror and see that my face isn’t framed the way it used to be. That great shiny expanse above my eyes just bugs me! TBH at 46 I’m a bit of an outlier amongst my mates with the baldness, but most of us are greying and several have baldy bits at the back or slight recession at the front. To get my front profile back would definitely be a boost and help me feel a bit more youthful and this sort of outcome would put me back in the pack, if that makes sense. I’ve always been fairly average looking I’d say, no amount of hair is turning me into Brad Pitt. This is where I’m at TBH, it’s not so much that it impacts my confidence, it’s more that I’m at that stage of life where just a few years back I was ‘young’ yet in little over 20 years I’ll be in my 70’s and these years are flying by quickly. If I could see out the rest of my youthful(ish) days with a nicely framed head, I’d be happy. This guy’s result looks very acceptable to me.
 
R

Ronnie

member
I’ve also started looking into different clinics and it’s good I have a year to do my research as it’s a minefield! I’ve made the mistake of looking at videos from The Maitland Clinic and Farjo Institute. It’s very easy to convince myself not to cut any corners and to just bite the bullet and pay ‘top whack’. I’ve not spoken to either directly, but I get the feeling that the numbers involved would be eye watering! Good results though clearly.

TBH though seeing the result you’ve achieved and also this guy for what are very affordable sums of money (relatively speaking that is, I’m not a rich man!) means it’s very worthwhile spending a lot of time researching. I definitely don’t want to be rushing into this taking a big punt without having done my research.

Cheers for directing me to this vid - definitely the most useful one I’ve watched so far.
 
R

Ronnie

member
Also meant to say, early days with the meds, but no side effects so far. The Regaine foam is a doddle to apply and dries in no time. Most people say you only need to apply once a day which is what I was going to do, but in the end I’ve been doing it twice, if it makes 1% difference over the year then it’s worth it. Similarly with the Finasteride, I’ve seen on ‘The Hair Loss Show’ that 3x per week is probably enough, but I’ve set off taking them daily and will reduce them if there are any side effects.
 
JesterRIP

JesterRIP

Valued member
Yeah your post #22 last paragraph makes total sense.

On considering a top-up I'd pretty much have to wait until Feb 2023 as the crown can take up to 18 months from the surgery date - at which point I'll be nearly 48 and asking if it's really worth it - especially since the front of my hair is now better than it's been for a very long time.

And by that I mean I was 16 when the military barber first shaved my head and given the recession already evident his exact words were, "so you're gonna be bald by 20 then!" - you can imagine I'm pretty much satisfied I'm in a much better place now than I was over 30 years ago.

The one thing that's really hit me over this whole thing though - more than anything else (and I might include this in my next clip) is that out of 35 people at my place of work, hardly any of them have noticed anything different, which paints quite a picture! How much time do we spend concerned about our own appearance, when it seems other people rarely do the same? Food for thought.
 
R

Ronnie

member
Well I’m 2 weeks into my meds. Been taking 1mg of Fin each morning and applying Regaine twice a day. Don’t seem to have side effects from either, though keep wondering if to go to 3 times a week for Fin as I’ve read that is plenty.

Have continued to read around and decided to give micro needling a go, based on the prevalence of reports suggesting that when combined with Minoxil the two together can be much more effective. Bought a £20 Derma Stamp off Amazon and gave it a go tonight. Not painful as such but you can certainly feel it. Feels quite tingly afterwards (I used 1mm). Very interested to see where all this leads.

Did a lot of research last weekend on doctors/clinics and have a short shortlist! The temptation to get a consultation now is massive, but I know there‘s an obvious benefit to seeing how things pan out for the next 6 months at least. I‘d still really like to get a current evaluation, just to know that I’m a potential candidate or even to be told “no chance” would be useful to set my expectations, for better or for worse. I’m going to try to wait it out and be patient, but the hope that I could get hair back is a powerful drug!
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
Good to hear you’re not suffering any sides from the meds. Personally, I’d stick to 1mg per day as that’s the recommend dose which nearly all doctors will advise. I’d only drop down if sides were happening. If you do get a consult now, you’ll be able to have your hair checked for miniaturisation. Then in 6 months, if you feel you’re ready for a HT, you can have it checked again to see if it’s improved.
 
R

Ronnie

member
Good to hear you’re not suffering any sides from the meds. Personally, I’d stick to 1mg per day as that’s the recommend dose which nearly all doctors will advise. I’d only drop down if sides were happening. If you do get a consult now, you’ll be able to have your hair checked for miniaturisation. Then in 6 months, if you feel you’re ready for a HT, you can have it checked again to see if it’s improved.

Cheers Bigmac.

This seems like really good advice. I actually shaved my hair down to a no1 (3mm) on 1st Jan and I believe that it ideally needs to be somewhat longer for a consultation, which has only occurred to me after posting my last question! TBH having my hair short and of varying lengths has probably not helped when asking for opinions on my condition on here. I think I’ll continue on my current regime until I have 3 months of hair growth, then I reckon that would be a good point to get the consultation. The Farjo Institute is local to me so I think I will go there as I know they are one of the top clinics in the UK and should give me a thorough and honest evaluation. I’m sort of aiming to have the surgery around about the start of next year if possible, gives me a year to work on making any improvements I can in preparation and then another year for the transplant to take hold and the new hair to grow.

Thanks again. I’m tempted to drop The Farjo Institute a line just to establish contact and to maybe have a chat with them.

Also, for anyone considering micro needling, I can report back that all seems well. I’d wondered if my head would be red and swollen the next day, but it seems fine. I spent a bit of time deciding between a Derma Roller/Pen/Stamp and went for the stamp in the end. £20 and can be adjusted between 0.25-3mm and you don’t need to replace the head each time, just clean before and after with neat alcohol. Time will tell if any of these have an effect, but it seems to be a game of attrition so it’s worth giving them all a go.

Cheers
 
R

Ronnie

member
Just submitted details for a free online assessment at Farjo. Interested to see what they come back with
 
Doc1

Doc1

Valued member
Hi Ronnie. I am in a similar position to you but a little further down the line. Just had my HT 2 days ago at Farjo with Greg Williams and I am delighted with the result considering the number of grafts I had available in one session (3284 grafts to be exact) . I am documenting my journey on the forum as found this forum helpful in my decision process. I am not looking for the hair I had when I was 20yrs old but just an improvement !
 
R

Ronnie

member
Hi Ronnie. I am in a similar position to you but a little further down the line. Just had my HT 2 days ago at Farjo with Greg Williams and I am delighted with the result considering the number of grafts I had available in one session (3284 grafts to be exact) . I am documenting my journey on the forum as found this forum helpful in my decision process. I am not looking for the hair I had when I was 20yrs old but just an improvement !
Hi Doc

Thanks so much for taking the time to view and reply to my thread. It’s great to be connected to the likes of yourself and Jester with similar progression.

I‘ll post on your thread but maybe the most telling thing for me is the hairline you have chosen. My initial reaction is that it should have been ‘flatter’ for want of a better way to describe it, but given further consideration, I think you have done exactly the right thing. Having seen other similar operations I think that once it’s grown in it will seem exactly right. It’s very tempting to design in the hairline you had at 20 years old, but even my friends who I’d say haven’t suffered hair loss at all, even they have a more mature hairline, with slight recession at the temples. I didn’t think I started balding until about 36/37 when I noticed my crown showing through, but looking back at old photos, the temples did start to recede from shortly after 30. I think trying to reinstate the hairline you had as a 20 year old would be a mistake and I’ll take that forward when I go for my consultation.

thanks again and I look forward to seeing your progress.
 
Doc1

Doc1

Valued member
Hi Doc

Thanks so much for taking the time to view and reply to my thread. It’s great to be connected to the likes of yourself and Jester with similar progression.

I‘ll post on your thread but maybe the most telling thing for me is the hairline you have chosen. My initial reaction is that it should have been ‘flatter’ for want of a better way to describe it, but given further consideration, I think you have done exactly the right thing. Having seen other similar operations I think that once it’s grown in it will seem exactly right. It’s very tempting to design in the hairline you had at 20 years old, but even my friends who I’d say haven’t suffered hair loss at all, even they have a more mature hairline, with slight recession at the temples. I didn’t think I started balding until about 36/37 when I noticed my crown showing through, but looking back at old photos, the temples did start to recede from shortly after 30. I think trying to reinstate the hairline you had as a 20 year old would be a mistake and I’ll take that forward when I go for my consultation.

thanks again and I look forward to seeing your progress.
Thanks Ronnie. I thought long and hard about my hairline. A flattened hair line is not the norm for us more mature gentlemen. I personally think a recessed temple is rather flattering on older men! Also the number of graft required to bring the hairline forward and flat to the correct density is significant and would mean that the rest of my head would be very sparse. I chose a sensible age appropriate look Which was guided by my Surgeon. Let’s face it I don’t look 20 yrs old so why should my hair .
 
R

Ronnie

member
Thanks Ronnie. I thought long and hard about my hairline. A flattened hair line is not the norm for us more mature gentlemen. I personally think a recessed temple is rather flattering on older men! Also the number of graft required to bring the hairline forward and flat to the correct density is significant and would mean that the rest of my head would be very sparse. I chose a sensible age appropriate look Which was guided by my Surgeon. Let’s face it I don’t look 20 yrs old so why should my hair .

HI Doc

I’m 100% with you on this, so so important to consider age/Norwood progression/donor availability in this. I think you’ve made absolutely the best and most informed decision. I suspect your final result will look fantastic and I’ll likely use your decisions to guide my own.

All the best and look forward to seeing how it pans out over the next year.

Cheers
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
Derma rolling or micro needling could work for you. It doesn’t cost much to try it.
Having a mature hairline is what I would go for if I was in your situation. It will conserve grafts and look age appropriate. Just take your time with your research, a few more months waiting wont hurt.
 
R

Ronnie

member
Derma rolling or micro needling could work for you. It doesn’t cost much to try it.
Having a mature hairline is what I would go for if I was in your situation. It will conserve grafts and look age appropriate. Just take your time with your research, a few more months waiting wont hurt.

Hi Bigmac

I did actually purchase a Dermastamp about a week ago and have had 1 session so far. Spent a good amount of time going all over the affected areas and slightly beyond with 1mm and all seems well. Could definitely feel it afterwards but almost kind of expected my head to be covered in plasma which wasn’t the case. I think I’ll probably repeat every 5 days and see how that goes.

You are absolutely right about being patient. It’s so hard though! Until a few weeks ago I thought I was stuck being bald forever, now that I have hope I want the results yesterday! I’ll have to just stay strong, a year on meds, surgery, a year for the results to come through. It’s definitely going to be tough. I have reached out to a couple of clinics for their thoughts (Farjo Institute and Dr Bicer). I’m impatient to know the type of approach they would go for with me, I do feel that my condition may continue to evolve even with meds so I assume there would be a conservative approach, maybe focus on the front and opt for lighter coverage on the crown. I’m guessing down the line there might be a need for a second go as I don’t want empty spots. TBH though I assume this is the same for everyone, nobody can be certain that their condition won’t change from the point they get the transplant. I guess a slight positive from being a Norwood 5 is that there isn’t much further to go!

I‘ll continue to update on progress and in particular any feedback I get from surgeons.

Cheers

Cheers
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
With some luck your regimen will improve your donor availability and keep those grafts healthy. Over time, these grafts can die, so it’s important to do what we can to hopefully prevent this. Planning for the future is very important, managing your donor, keeping it healthy, strategically placing the grafts.
Keep us informed how you feel the derma rolling is going.
All the best.
 
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