Hair Transplant Info
1600 Grafts by
Dr. Theodore Katz
2249 Grafts by
3701 Grafts by
2099 Grafts by
Age: 42 | Bald Class: Email Me
At age 27, I decided to start doing some actual research about hair loss and one of the first sites I found was the Hair Transplant Network. It was Pat Hennessey himself who inspired me by reading through his blog to get a hair transplant.
After some research, I chose to have my first transplant with Dr. Katz in Philadelphia, PA. I chose him firstly because he was recommended on this site AND he was local. Whereas today I always advise people not to let location determine which surgeon one decides on, it WAS one of my decisions back then. I admit that I was not heavily researched when I went in for my first hair transplant - though I believe Dr. Katz set me on a good track as far as expectations. Here are the statistics:
Hair Transplant 1 - September 2004, I was a NW5A (Dr. Katz of Philadelphia, PA)
I received 1600 grafts (800 in the front half and 800 in the crown area). I unfortunately do not have hair counts.
For the small number of grafts on a NW5A, this gave me a surprisingly natural (though very thin) result.
Hair Transplant 2 - July 2005, I was a NW5A borderline NW6 (That is, if I never had surgery) - (Dr. True of NY, NY)
My hairline was reshaped a bit and gave me some more density in the frontal 2/3rds of my scalp which really helped improve my appearance.
Hair Transplant 3 - October 2006 - I lost enough native hair at this point to be considered a NW6 - (Dr. Hasson, Vancouver, BC, Canada)
Overall density and appearance improved significantly.
Hair Transplant?4 - April 1, 2009 - After restoring a large portion of my hair, I decided to go back for more density - (Dr. Hasson, Vancouver, BC, Canada)
Grand Total of Surgeries: 9618 Grafts
The only non-surgical treatment I am taking at this point is finasteride in the form of 1/4 Proscar pill per day. The only reason I am still taking this is I believe it MIGHT be helping me maintain the native (non-transplanted) hair I have below the crown.
My Hair Loss Story
Most of you know me from the forums already, but I thought I'd take the time to create my own hair web log
I started losing my hair around the age of 21 and 22. I was in denial at first - like most people are. I saw what looked like some thinning in my crown - this was the first area to go.
I started my first treatment of Rogaine 5% when I was about 23 years old after talking with my father who had success with it. It seemed to work a bit for awhile, but I became lazy.
I foolishly thought if I stopped taking it I would keep the existing hair I regrew. Well, let me tell you that this is not true...not only do I know this now from experience, but the disclaimer even states this.
So I tried Rogaine 5% again a year or so later after my condition worsened - and it only made my scalp itch. So I tried the 2% generic version of minoxodil (the active ingredient in Rogaine) which didn't irritate my scalp, but it didn't appear to be working either.
So I tried a number of supposed "cures". Notice the quotes around the word cure. Let me tell all you readers now that there is NO cure for hair loss - don't let anyone deceive you. I've tried ridiculous products like Folliguard (anyone remember this?), Nism, Reviogen, and a few others. None of them did anything but make my head sticky as I continued to lose more hair.
I lost a lot of hair between the the age of 25 to 27. Looking back on pictures made me very depressed and miserable. I just felt unattractive and my confidence was impacted.
Let me tell you that hair loss affects people differently. I would say that most if not all people don't like it, but some let it impact them more than others. I know some people who don't seem to be that bothered by it, and I know others who are extremely affected. My sympathy and empathy is strong for those who are extremely affected by it - especially to the point where their social life suffers from their own withdraw.
Whereas I believe that there is MUCH more to life than hair, I admit that my confidence was moderately affected. I wore a hat just about everywhere. The funny thing is, that I could pull this off very well - because all through high school I wore a hat because it was the cool thing to do (no - wearing a hat does not cause hair loss - this is a hair loss myth - along with many others. You'll find many posting by me and my peers on the forums about this and other subjects).
This is where my surgical research and treatments began. See below:
How has my hair loss affected me?
As I decribed above, my confidence was moderately impacted by my hair loss. I wore a hat in just about all social situations, and I avoided inviting certain people into social situations with me, if it was inappropriate to wear a hat at that time.
What hair loss treatments have worked best for me?
Finasteride and Hair Transplant Surgical Procedures
What hair loss treatments would I recommend?
- Finasteride - An oral treatment in form of a one a day pill - Research the medication and consult a doctor before taking it. It is only available by prescription in the US.
- Minoxodil - A topical treatment used to increase circulation to the scalp
- Nizoral or Revita shampoo (2 or 3 times a week for Nizoral - daily for Revita). Dry scalp and dry hair may occur with Nizoral if overused. Revita appears to be less harsh on the scalp. You may want to alternatively try Revita Shampoo which has the same active ingredient called ketoconazole. This is a good supplemental treatment - but ketoconazole is only known to be a "weak" DHT inhibitor.
How has hair restoration surgery changed my life?
I feel like a new man after having hair transplant surgery. It is rare that I go out WITH a hat now - and I've even had compliments on my hair. I feel much better about myself and my overall confidence has increased. This site has been a lifesaver for me, and now I give back to this community because it has given me so much. Thanks to Pat and the dedicated members of the forum community for being there for me as I now can be there for all of you.
My general advice and suggestions.
Research is the key to ensuring a successful hair restoration process.
Don't jump into anything nor make emotional decisions. I understand how difficult it is to lose your hair - I've been there. But I've seen too many people make poor decisions and have seen them back on the forum a year later wishing they would have listened to the veterans of the community and asking for repair advice.
Sadly, all hair restoration surgeons are NOT equal. So choose carefully! Don't take anyone's word for it - do your own research.
Don't just evaluate the photos on a clnic's website. Use this forum and view REAL photos posted by REAL patients. Don't base your decision on ONE patient's photos...look for consistency in a multitude of photos posted by various patients.
I'm thankful that this site exists and continues to hold physicians accountable for their work, holding them to a higher level of standards. This is only possible through the hard work and dedication of this communities loyal members. Thanks to all.