View Full Version : Hair loss and regrowth.. my story [w/ pictures]

12-10-2009, 11:07 PM
I'm 31. I started losing hair around 18. At 20, I was a Norwood 2 I would say. My hairline didn't recede much after that, but my hair kept falling out. At 24 I saw a doctor and he recommended Propecia. Back then I was a college student and couldn't afford it.

I kept losing hair. I tried Rogaine and *******, but something about minoxidil doesn't agree with me (even the version that doesn't contain propylene glycol). I get kind of an uncomfortable feeling, and my heart rate jumps to 90-100 at rest. I used them on and off but never took them for any significant period of time.

About 18 months ago, I had Propecia prescribed. For the first two months, I noticed my sex drive was very low. I read that this was supposed to be a passing phase, and indeed it was. I was back to normal at month three or four.

I am quite the skeptic, and I didn't believe Propecia could do much. Was I wrong. I noticed my hair getting fuller as the months went by. I stopped losing hair, and even noticed my hairline advancing, albeit very slowly (not in any way that would make it a substitute for transplant).

Take a look at the pictures. The one in the tie is before. The others are after.

Question 1: I'd like to get a prescription for Proscar because Propecia is expensive. How can I go about doing that?

Question 2: How many grafts would I need to repair my hairline around the temples?

Thank you.

12-11-2009, 01:14 AM
Hey bud, couple of things:

First off- GREAT RESULTS. That is a huge improvment in finasteride, and I congratulate you on your massive success with the drug. I hope it is apparent to other readers in the photos how much of a difference that stuff can make in some folks. I have also had moderate success with the drug, but not quite the level of regrowth you seemed to have exhibited. Sweet deal dude!

Secondly- I do the proscar thing, but it basically came about because my Doc suggested doing it that way (I knew about it from here, but my Doc came out with that option before I even asked). If you can, go back to you physician and ask about proscar 5mg, they should know what you are talking about.

If you do get the proscar, your gonna have to buy some sort of pillcutter or really sweet exacto knife (go with the pillcutter imo lol). You can't get generic
1 mg. finasteride or 1 mg. proscar, so if you do it the proscar way, you have to quarter up the 5mg. tablets.

Good luck bud!

12-11-2009, 01:16 AM
Another thing:

I don't really see any need to repair your hairline man. I think the photos really look great. Still, its your head, so do what you want :D just throwing out my opinion.

12-11-2009, 11:03 AM
congrats man! Great to see the stuff working for you. I've been on the med for a year and a half now and i have not seen any progress. Guess your just one of those few guys propecia really works on. Has to be a great feeling getting back your hair like that.

Btw boss....your hairline is just fine. You could put off the idea of a hair transplant if your hair stays like that.

12-11-2009, 11:29 AM
You're hair looks perfect the way it is. It fits your age and I would not have a hair transplant at this stage if I were in your lucky shoes. Itís always encouraging to see these type of results from Propecia.

12-12-2009, 06:19 AM
Ragckr, thanks. I asked my doctor for Proscar, but he said he "wasn't comfortable" prescribing it. I'd love to find a doctor who is. Maybe one of the doctors on this forum can help. Are there any around DC?

robberob, sorry to hear man. I hope they come out with a better treatment soon.

HelpROGER, thanks. My hair covers up the areas with hairloss relatively well, but I'd still like to look into transplant. I'm gonna take more pictures to really show where the hair is missing.

12-14-2009, 11:49 PM
Well, if your general doctor isn't comfortable doing it there may be a reason I suppose. Perhaps something else is going on? I don't know, and I can't honestly see any reason that a doctor wouldn't do it..........its the same stuff lol.

If you are still getting a refusal from him, your other option is to see a dermatologist. Just explain that you are already on Propecia, but you are really having some money problems and would like to switch over and quarter up 5 mg. Proscar because it is a heckuva lot cheaper. I think most of them are pretty good about prescribing it that way.

Keep up on the finasteride though, however you end up having to get it and good luck!

12-15-2009, 12:11 AM
Ragckr, it's a dermatologist who prescribed Propecia for me. There is nothing else going on, he just said that the studies were done with Propecia and he doesn't give patients anything else. I had the feeling it was more about "doing the right thing by the pharmaceutical company".

I respect his decision; I didn't press the issue. But I am glad that other doctors do prescribe Proscar, it's very compassionate and I admire them for doing that.

12-15-2009, 12:44 AM
That wouldn't suprise me at all, he probably is just trying to do right by the pharmaceutical company Merk.

Since it is a dermatologist that you are seeing, perhaps pay a visit to your general/family doctor. Thats who I went to for hairloss in the first place, and thankfully he was pretty well versed on the topic.

Since you already have a prescription for finasteride and diagnosed MPB by your dermatologist, I don't see you visiting your general doctor and putting up a request for Proscar a complete overstepping of your boundaries...........afterall, it is your body. I would think he would be pretty open to the idea (if he isn't already prescribing it for other patients anyways lol) if you just let em know your reasoning for it.

12-15-2009, 12:49 AM
Also, there is a chance that your doctors are thinking you are trying to pull one over on the insurance companies. None that I know of would probably cover Propecia as it is a treatment for a purely cosmetic issue. However, with Proscar, it is generally prescribed as a treatment for enlarged prostates (medical) and can get covered by insurance.

I cant say for sure that would be the reasoning, merely a thought. Perhaps you should really let whoever you go to your clear intentions. They really are the same drug, just in different doses (thats how Propecia was founded in the first place: through the medical trials with Proscar).

12-16-2009, 06:32 PM
MCR - Amazing results! How long did it take for the Propecia to kick in? I have been on it for 5 months now and I haven't seen any results yet. I know it is still early but I'm hoping for the best! Also, did you experience a shed?

12-16-2009, 07:26 PM
Hey Mike82, I can't say that I experienced a shed. It was a slow, gradual thickening of the hair for me. I started noticing results around the 3-4 month mark I'd say. I could see definite results at 6 months. The guy who cuts my hair made the remark that my hair was getting fuller, but it could be that he was just being nice. Either way beyond the 6 month mark the results continued to come in, and I feel they haven't quite stopped yet.

I notice them most when I get a hair cut, my hair just looks a little bit fuller everytime.

I am however looking to restore my hairline, and it seems a HT is the only way to do it.

What level hairloss do you have? If Propecia has done nothing so far but stop hairloss, that's still pretty good. Maybe growth will come later.

12-21-2009, 08:10 PM
I am thinning pretty evenly all over the top of my head. My scalp isn't totally exposed yet but if the propecia doesn't kick in soon it will be. On top of all that I've got some really weird dandruff which I never had before. Hopefully in just a few more short months things will be better.

12-27-2009, 05:40 PM
I've taken a high resolution picture to show the regrowth. I've mentioned that Propecia had somewhat reversed hair loss in my frontal hairline.

You'll see big, fully grown hairs along the hairline, and also small hairs that are just starting to regrow. I don't know if these will actually turn into fully grown hairs.

The file size is large so I couldn't upload it to the forum. Go here:


Click on "full size" below the picture. The picture will pop up in a new window. You may need to click to zoom in 100% on it, then you can use the zoom tool in the bottom right in Internet Exporer to zoom in/out.

12-28-2009, 10:14 AM
You hair looks great, thatís only from Propecia?

12-28-2009, 01:43 PM
Yes Propecia only. The only other thing I tried very briefly is minoxidil (******* 15%) but I think I'm allergic to it.

05-07-2010, 11:42 PM
I remember seeing this thread some time ago.

Awesome results man...really amazing. I wish I can have similar results. Would change my life lol.

But again...amazing results man.

I think I get side effects too perhaps though I am not sure. I think its the minoxidil but...it might be because I am sick lately. I don't know.

I think I have naturally low blood pressure and it might be making things worse. I just have no clue.

05-08-2010, 12:00 PM
nice results mcr! I am on my 5th month of taking propecia, i've started taking it every other day to save costs and i've read up that taking it every other day works pretty much just as well as taking it daily.

I noticed that in the 4th month of taking propecia, my hair has gotten thicker, i can see my scalp less, esp. when i put hair product in it.

The problem i'm having is the past 2 weeks i've been getting a few side effects: loss of morning erection, loss of libido. At one point i got the feeling of decreased sensitivity to my penis and htat made me really nervous.

How long did it take you to get over the side effects? And what was going through your head? Right now I'm nervous to keep continuing on it because I don't want to damage my sex life (i'm only 25 and have always had a high libido) but i also want to keep the hair growth i seem to have gained. Any advice? Thanks.

05-08-2010, 02:27 PM
My main advice is and will always be: talk to your doctor. No lay person can replace the opinion of a medical professional. The symptoms you have may or may not be related to Propecia. The only one who can answer that is a doctor.

As far as the side effects, I didn't care much to be honest. They're not permanent, and they usually go away after a few months, which they did after 3 or 4 months in my case.

I wouldn't stop taking it.

05-18-2010, 08:55 PM
Time for a little update: It seems I am winning the war against genetics. It's pure luck, but I continue to experience raging regrowth of hair. This has affected my confidence as I look now younger than I did 5 years ago.

I recently had a comment from a guy younger than I, he's a norwood III or IV, shaves his head. He told me I look 18. Obviously I don't look 18, but I knew what he meant, and I knew how he felt about his hairloss.

I go out much more frequently now, carry myself with more confidence. I just FEEL good about myself.

I need just a little bit more hair around my temples to have a cosmetically acceptable hairline that is close to Norwood I or so, where hairloss would not be too detectable. I also find growing my hair out helps me style it in a way that is more presentable.

My hairline continues to recover and grow more hair, and I am going to use *******15+ on my temples and help those small hairs grow. If you compare the pic attached to those in my original post, it looks like nothing short of a miracle.

My daily regimen remains:
1 mg Finasteride
0.5mg Dutasteride
and I will add the *******.

05-20-2010, 11:02 AM
mcr your results are amazing mate, congrats, especially when compared to the original photo. It's almost unbelievable that you achieved this just through Propecia, not that I'm doubting you haha ;)

What stage did you start adding the 0.5mg Dutasteride, and do you think this has made a noticeable difference?


05-20-2010, 11:28 AM
Thanks. I guess it's just luck that I responded to Propecia so well. I started adding the Dutasteride about 3-4 months ago. I won't be able to tell how well it's working because I am taking Finasteride too. Hard to know whether the results are due to continued finasteride usage, or Dutasteride. However science indicates that Dutasteride is even more effective at lowering DHT levels, so my reasoning is that if Finasteride worked well, it can't hurt to try Dutasteride.

And I've started using *******15+ now too. I hate having to. It leaves an oily sheen along the hairline.

05-20-2010, 03:52 PM
Why would you take Dut if Propecia is working so well??

05-20-2010, 04:24 PM
Your regrowth is so amazing...

How did your hair look by the 1st month? what about 2nd? 3rd 4th?

When did it still look the same? And when did it START to change?

I am one month in...nothing yet. :(

05-20-2010, 06:45 PM
Why would you take Dut if Propecia is working so well??

It's called hair greed. It's never enough. You always want more.

Your regrowth is so amazing...

How did your hair look by the 1st month? what about 2nd? 3rd 4th?

When did it still look the same? And when did it START to change?

I am one month in...nothing yet. :(

Honestly, I didn't start seeing noticeable regrowth until the 5th or 6th month, and after that everytime I get a hair cut I notice my hair is a little fuller. You should know how well it's working by the 12th month in my opinion. Be patient in the first few months.

05-20-2010, 07:50 PM

Maybe there is hope for me... I still think concealers and stuff is a great extra when I get some regrowth. I will use them even if I get HSC and a hair transplant. It will just make it "better"

so if your greedy like me...get some concealers and use it in moderation. It will make your hair much better and noone will know...maybe you will even forget about it yourself lol

05-20-2010, 09:10 PM
I am reluctant to try concealers because my hairloss is in the temples, I'd be freaking out all day worrying that people can see it. Right now I have enough hair that I can style it to cover the temples and still look normal. Right now I can even take a shower and go out with my hair wet without showing much hairloss, which I used to not be able to.

Also, I noticed that ******* gives my hair a little body and makes it thicker, even after I wash it off.

In your case (and mine), I think you should just do whatever you can to... keep the hair (!) until there is a cure. The current treatments should get us through the next 5 years.

And I don't mean to get philosophical on you, but I think hairloss has been a blessing in disguise. I used to be quite confident - even ****y - because of my good looks; girls used to tell me how handsome I look, and many friends told me they wished they had hair like mine.

It looked something like this http://cm1.theinsider.com/media/0/386/93/colin-farrell-wenn.0.0.0x0.364x640.jpeg

By age 20 hairloss had hit me like a train, and I was just an average guy trying to hide his temples. A girl once looked at an old picture of me and commented on how I used to be so handsome.

Even though I was just a Norwood II or so, it made a big difference. I had a big shift in personality and became more introverted. It's been a humbling experience; I am now more sensitive to others generally. But I would still give anything to go back to Norwood I.

05-21-2010, 05:50 AM
It's only a good thing if you can reverse it! Otherwise it is definitely a horrible thing in life, no matter what personality gains you get. It will destroy you in a sense...since looks are how people see you. So that...is how they SEE you.

most of my loss is at the temples also... And I doubt I am getting any of it back... I am just hoping that dermmatch or a spray can just somewhat thicken the existing hair to make it look better.

From now on everytime I think of lending someone money, spending money on expensive food...or buying junk...I will just say, hey man...that large pizza could have been 1 CIT graft from Dr. Cole!


05-22-2010, 09:36 AM
Those are amazing results! I'm glad it worked so good for you, gives me a little bit of hope for me. If I could get that much hair back It would be one good day.

05-22-2010, 06:02 PM
Thanks. How well Propecia works depends on genetics I guess. It's a good thing you're tackling this problem early. Also it looks like you look good with a shaved head which a lot of people do not.

Another big advantage is that you are young, hopefully there will be a cure in 3-5 years and you will get to enjoy a full head of hair while you are young. Either way good luck to you.

05-22-2010, 06:34 PM
Your hair looked worse than mine...to now better than mine...

Geez. But anyway. I think it would still be a good idea to throw in some thickness products and go totally overboard. That is what I would do even if I have such great results!

Time will tell...

05-25-2010, 04:39 AM
I am noticing some shedding these days. This is most likely due to starting ******* last week. It's the only thing that's changed in my regimen. I'm not shedding a lot, so I'm not worried about it.

Also, I believe I've gotten as much as I ever will from fin/dut, which is I am very happy with. I will continue to use them to maintain what I have.

However, I am now seriously looking into getting a HT because my temples are very unlikely to regrow the hair that fell out. I was looking at some old pictures and that hair was the first to fall out; I had lost it by age 20. It was just genetically programmed to fall out and never grow again.

I've been looking at the galleries of pictures here and they are very encouraging. HT procedures have reached a level today where good results can reasonably be expected. I will contact some docs and see if the financial aspect is something I can work out. By my unscientific estimates, I'll probably need between 1000 and 2000 grafts. I wish HT procedures were more affordable.

I love this forum. It's relatively small and there's a sense of community here. And it's great that there are docs who take the time to interact with the common folk.

05-25-2010, 10:08 AM
yeah, I too want a transplant even if I get some regrowth. The hair will really boost my confidence! But all the money, not easy to get.

Wish I could get my hands on some dutasteride and take it weekly or something.

06-25-2010, 08:45 AM
Time for a quick update.

I've been traveling for the past 3 weeks and only took finasteride with me. I have an appointment with my primary doc next month; I want to ask him about the safety of long-term use of dutasteride before resuming it.

I've also noticed that using *******15+ makes hair grow all over my body, not just scalp. My arm hair, eyebrows, etc. I'm not a hairy person so this is not noticeable, but it's still not necessarily something I like.

Otherwise, I continue to get thicker hair on my head and my hairline is advancing ever so slowly. I am extremely happy with the results, and really considering getting a HT to get some hair on my temples. Once that's done I would be really close to having an undamaged hairline.

I was wondering what would happen since I stopped ******* and dut now that I'm traveling, but it seems finasteride does a great job by itself - no shedding, so I wonder if dutasteride was doing anything at all. I guess we'll never know.

06-25-2010, 09:38 AM
Amazing. Congratulations with your results. And thanks for posting this and adding hope to us who are new on propecia! Take care.

06-29-2010, 09:36 PM
Another quick update. I took a picture and just wanted to show the very small progress I've been making. My hairline is trying to recover though it's really very slow and I believe I need a HT.

Here's a picture though. You can see little hairs popping up on my temples though it's really too little hair to matter.

If I could get a few hairs implanted in that area where the red arrows are I think it would look much better.


06-30-2010, 01:56 AM
You really are getting greedy ;). Your hair has improved a lot. I'd love to get a hair transplant too. But honestly...the scars the money it costs. It really isn't worth it man...

Your hair really does look fine. You might try something like retin-a for regrowth or some topical antiandrogen like spironolactone to increase benefits maybe... I doubt it would do much though. Give minox some more time. But it won't do that much.

I don't think it's wise to be greedy man. Your hair looks good. You really don't want a scar and FUE is really expensive lol. But if you have the money I would probably also do it!

Post some better pics maybe? I am curious how your hair line compares to mine.

11-09-2010, 05:26 PM
What about side effects in your regime?

25 going on 65
11-10-2010, 10:49 AM
I just have to say, this is an amazing response to finasteride.

I honestly think your hair looks damn good now, but I can understand still wanting a transplant. A few years back, you probably didn't even consider the possibility of regaining a youthful head of hair. And now that you see you're such a good responder to meds, all kinds of new cosmetic opportunities have opened up. :)
Good luck with whatever you decide. If you do go ahead with a transplant, just remember to do a ton of research first, as you should with any elective surgery!

11-10-2010, 11:44 AM
My hair shedding is really really bothering me.....Everyday i feel worse when i look in the mirror but at times i feel decent.. Its soooo hard to stay positive. I'm shedding so much hair and dread showers in the morning.. I talked to spencer bout this 2 weeks ago and i just need to vent about this shedding!!!!

11-11-2010, 12:45 AM
Google Fincar. Exact finasteride equivalent of Proscar (5 mg), but way cheaper and you can buy over internet. There are some here who won't trust anything overseas (in this case India) but I have been using for years and will continue to do so.

06-14-2016, 10:06 AM
I use a small plier type horizontal nail cutter/wire cutter that you can get at any hardware store to cut the pills - works better than pill cutters..