Join Date: Feb 2010
10 months post-op with Dr Feriduni
I’m now 10 months out from my hair transplant procedure with Dr Feriduni. I wanted to add my story to these boards, because I relied on other people’s experiences so much when making my decision, and very much enjoyed some of the more sardonic posts (hi Fixedby35! *waves, blows kiss*), and I would like to make my own small contribution.
This is going to be looooong. Sorry.
First things first, my story, which I am certain is not unique. I first noticed my impending baldness in a weekend in June 2002, the weekend of the Queen’s 50th anniversary, when I was age 21. It was the second worst day of my life (topped only by the day my mother died). I was devastated. Because, to quote the Smiths, I am the son and the heir of a shyness that is criminally vulgar, I could not believe that the universe would be so spiteful as to rob me of my hair as well, taking me from socially awkward to complete recluse. Why me? Why not an Italian footballer, or a guy in a boyband? And so on, and so forth.
Fast forward to 2010. I had decided to have an HT. Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness, and all that. I had been researching baldness cures with increasing desperation in the intervening years, reading people’s stories on the forums. I had narrowed my choice down to Hasson and Wong, and Dr Feriduni. I had a number of online consultations, and I met with Dr Wong when he was in London, and I met with a few former patients (thank you very much for your time, guys).
In the end, I decided to go with Dr Feriduni, purely for geographical reasons – Belgium is nearer to the UK than Canada.
Dr Feriduni himself is thoroughly charming, and put me in mind of a better-looking version of the French actor Jean Reno (the guy from Leon). He has a very reassuring ‘bedside manner’, and his English is word perfect. His assessment of me was exactly the same as Dr Wong’s, almost eerily so, they even used some of the same phrasing (“beautiful donor”, and “you have a lot of hair”).
I had 4000 grafts via strip. Because of the lovely drugs they give you, I spent the operation in that soft twilight that will be familiar to anyone like me, who grew up in Manchester and had a teenage interest in recreational pharmaceuticals. In fact, I felt rather like a Raj, kicking back in the Lay-ze-boy, while the experienced technicians attended to me.
I returned to my hotel, and had a glass of red wine and watched Curb your Enthusiasm.
After a brief checkup the next day, I returned to London.
The first fly in the ointment. On the (I think) third night, my post-op discomfort became actual pain, leaving me unable to sleep. I think this was a combination of it being unusually sweltering in London, my having drank too much beer that evening, and not following the post-op instructions carefully enough.
Anyway, big girl’s blouse that I am, I nonetheless managed to man up.
On the fourteenth day, I had my stitches/staples removed by a lovely nurse at an NHS drop-in centre, who had never heard of hair transplantation, but who was extremely impressed by the neatness of my scar, which was reassuring.
Next downside. I did not truly appreciate how long recovery time would be. I knew that HTs take a year to grow, but I did not realise that I would not feel comfortable being out and about without a baseball cap or concealer for approximately three months. I fully admit that this is my own fault for not doing my research thoroughly enough, but I think it is worth noting here.
So that’s the darkness, now the light. I got a new job. About 6 months post op, I found myself in the midst of an office conversation about footballer Wayne Rooney and his HT, and was amused to hear my colleagues explain, with complete authority, how an HT is performed (“first, they cut off the top of your head…..”), unaware that they had an HT veteran in their midst, i.e. me. The office was lots of young lads and extremely banter-rich, and if they had even the slightest suspicion that I had had this operation, someone would have voiced it. They did not. I consider that a definite win.
Secondly. I happened to bump into an old boss of mine, who I hadn’t seen in around 2 years. She was extremely effusive, almost to the point of being taken aback, about “how well I looked” mentioning it three times in the first minute of meeting me, something I can only put down to her having last seen me ‘before’, and not seen me again until ‘after’.
And third, I worked with a girl, who is the most beautiful thing that I have ever seen. You should see this girl. Around a month ago, she was reading an article in a magazine, in which a number of women had been surveyed about the qualities they look for in ‘Mr Right’. This girl read the article to me, because, she said, the qualities given described me exactly – and it was something like “He’s 6’2”, has green eyes, is kind, doesn’t talk too much, has a FULL HEAD of black hair…….”
So there we go. It’s the Queen’s 60th anniversary next month, which would be the 10 year anniversary of my baldness journey. I am utterly delighted with the results of my HT, which is why I don’t frequent these forums anymore, because I no longer feel the need. I am no longer insecure about my hair. I still have all my other cripplingly insecurities, of course, but one thing at a time. I cannot articulate the relief I feel in not having to worry about my hair. I do not wear concealor or anything like that, and only notice that my hair is even slightly thin in the harshest of light.
I’d like to say a profound thank you to Dr Feriduni, and to Spencer Kobren, I think it’s unbelievably brave what he’s decided to do for a living, and if I hadn’t read his book in 2002, I don’t know what stupid thing I would have done.
I sincerely hope that everyone on these forums finds the peace that they are looking for. Thanks for reading.