AAPE/Harg treatment/clinics in Japan - BaldTruthTalk.com
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  1. #1
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    Default AAPE/Harg treatment/clinics in Japan

    Hi all first time poster short time lurker

    A bit about me first. 34 year old Canadian living in Japan. Never gave much thought to hair loss before (the past couple of months of lurking has made me gain a lot of respect for those of you who get inflicted with this shit in your 20s) until my last hair cut a couple of months ago. noticed definite recession (NW2.5ish) and although my hairdresser said my crown was fine I soon realized it's definitely thinning. Damn. Obviously you all know the feeling.

    After researching possible treatments I ruled most of them out (Minox might kill my cat-I know many will dispute this but for me even the slightest chance makes it a non starter-, Nizoral, PRP, LLLT probably won't do much, don't have the DIY mindset or willingness to go on the black market for other alternatives)

    That leaves Fin, which I haven't ruled out but am scared of for obvious reasons, and AAPE/Harg Therapy.

    I won't describe AAPE/Harg because there are already several in depth threads on here discussing it but what there is a massive lack of is actual first hand reports on here. There is one excellent thread by notfittowin but it is still in the early stages, and another one by someone else that seemed to get abandoned last year (not a particularly good sign). I obviously cannot give a report yet since I have not done the treatment. I will however be visiting some doctors in the coming weeks to discuss the possibility of taking this treatment. In the meantime in gratitude for the help this forum has given me (wouldn't have had a clue what AAPE was without it) I'd like to share what I've learned in the past few weeks of scouring the Japanese websites and message boards. I realize that it's completely impractical for most of you to move to Japan or to fly every month or so for the treatment but since it is becoming more available in N.A. and Europe I hope the info will be of some use.

    First of all the treatment is used in more than 180 clinics all over the country and has been around since about 2009 if i'm not mistaken.

    Cost:

    It is pretty fukking expensive. Prices vary but in general at a normal place you pay about 100 000 yen (about 800 bucks) per treatment and the absolute bare minimum to get results seems to be a 3 set course. Most places seem to recommend 6 times and there are reports of people spending over a million yen (more on their results later). basically on average it seems like people pay about 3000-6000 USD. It looks like Notfittowin has been able to obtain a much, much more attractive price by buying on line an getting a doctor he knows and trusts to do it for him in the U.S. (I think) so that's good news at least.

    Does it work?

    It seems that depends on who you ask. The doctors who sell it unsurprisingly say "Hell Yeah it works!" In over 90% of cases. Some claim as high as 99%.

    Here are some links to clinics (I know most of you won't likely read Japanese but hopefully you can get the gist using google translate. I'm happy to answer any questions as best I can-my Japanese is decent but reading is tough and takes a long time):

    http://www.harg.org

    http://www.a3-clinic.com/mens/harg.html

    http://www.osaka-chuoh.com/harg/

    Here is a link to the the Harg Assosciation:

    http://www.jp-harg.jp

    So obviously in any country it's not unheard of for doctors who are trying to sell a product or treatment to embellish their results.

    What do customers have to say? This was harder to track down with my imperfect Japanese but I managed to find some message boards and customer reviews (couldn't find anywhere near as good of a forum as this place though)


    http://call-to-beauty.com/ope/man_007/

    This seemed to be the best site I could find From what I can tell they basically offer a (hopefully) objective overview of different kinds of cosmetic treatments and allow for customer reviews as well (they also introduce clinics that offer the treatments).

    Their overview basically describes what it is then gives the good points which they describe as:

    Unlike Propecia it can be used by women
    Does not cause side effects
    Has proven efficacy in clinical studies

    It's bad points:

    Although individual results may vary for some people it can require taking the treatment a lot of times before they see regrowth
    If numerous treatments are required the costs can pile up

    It also says that it will not work on people who are already slick bald.

    The next sections are basically saying the type of doctors you should look for and the way the treatment should be given.

    Even if you can't make sense of the reviews you can still see the star ratings out of five. Both male and female customers give reviews. you can tell which is which at the bottom of the reviews 性別:女性 =female and 性別:男性 is male. You can also see their ages next to gender. On this site the reviews are mostly positive for both male and female. The negative review guy basically says he completed one course (I'm sorry to say I haven't figured out exactly if this means six times or 3 times, I think it's 6 though) and hasn't seen any result. Basically everyone else claims some positive result although some of the men say they're on propecia as well. Some claim it hurts and a lot of them complain about the cost.

    A far more less favourable board:

    http://biyou-iryou.jp/catalog/detail/179/

    The write up at the top follows a similar format but is less favourable regarding the efficacy. It doesn't say that it won't work but basically says that there are reports of it being ineffective and that careful consideration should be exercised.

    The comments are also waaaaay less favourable than the other site I linked. There are definitely still some positive reviews but I'd say at least 60% or so are negative. There are a lot of super bitter ones by people who dropped like 10 000 bucks or so and saw no result. Then again unsatisfied customers tend to be more vocal right?

    So basically from what I can tell it's far from perfect but is effective for some people and given my situation i plan to look into it more. I don't like the idea of spending that much money on something that might not work but it may be worth the risk. I'm going to start with asking my hair dresser her opinion and then I'm going to visit a few dermatologists and then some of the clinics themselves. I plan on doing that within the next month or so and will keep you posted. If i do decide to do the treatment I will document my progress here.

    In the meantime I plan to see what more I can find on the web and will try to share it with you. Any questions or advice or things you think I should ask the doctor let me know.

  2. #2
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    Thanks so much for posting. I've paid a total of $1,100 for 6 treatments (so $183 per treatment), so from my end it's been very cheap. I personally bought the vials from prostemics for $500 (they supply you with 6 sessions worth), and my doctor charges me $100 per session to inject. Each session lasts about 15 minutes.

    So far, I don't think I've seen anything. I'm not on anything else (no fin, hellllls no), and I've done 5 sessions so far since early April. My hair loss is pretty slow but a part of me thinks its getting worse very very very slowly. Then again, I've only been doing this for four months, so I'm not too sure on how I should play the waiting game, but perhaps 6-12+ months is required at least.

  3. #3
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    I too am trying out AAPE (just AAPE, not HARG).

    I am around 7 weeks in, completed 3rd set of injections on 6th week. No results yet. I intend to give it atleast 6 months to work. If it maintains side free I'll be happy.

    I self inject - so in total I'm paying around $100 USD per set of injections (including needles, water etc). Obviously don't recommend injecting yourself unless you've got the right equipment and training

    Besides being derived from different cells, Histogen is literally the same thing in the sense that its just naturally, not made, but cultured and extracted growthfactors. Of course ratios and types of GFs may be and probably is different etc etc

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    Yeah price wise you are paying I think around a quarter or a fifth of what patients here pay for the treatment here. There is something to be said for getting it done at a clinic that has experience in doing it but still, even the users on the Japanese sites that claimed positive results complained about the price.

    No results after 4 months doesn't seem to be anything to worry about from what i can tell. Even the most wildly optimistic Doctors that are selling this will say they expect results from after 3-6 months and the general consensus from what I can tell is that the basic 6 time course should be enough for most people but a fair number will need to do another course. At the price you're paying the second course is probably worth it but I can understand why some of the people who paid so much here are extremely bitter about the experience.

    Honestly what bothers me most is the 99% success rate claims. If I felt a Doctor was being honest and said to me "look, I cannot give clients' personal information but here is the complete number of times to date I have administered the treatment, the age and gender of each client, whether they were on other treatment, the hair count result for each case etc.., as you can see about 60-70% were satisfied with their result" . Or even if they just give a number that seems more believable and I got the impression that they were honest I'd be more inclined to go with them.

    Losing money is one thing, handing it over to a fraud is another

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    Quality post, thanks.

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    Online reviews and testimonials are very easy to fake. I tried the links you posted, but I don't speak Japanese. There don't seem to be any before and after photos. I also wouldn't rely on articles in the popular press or that appear on websites devoted to beauty and cosmetics. The reporting is often uninformed and the writers are more interested in clickbait traffic than reporting facts. I have to question what they mean when they say "clinically proven." Where, when, and by whom? How was efficacy demonstrated?

    This sounds like what happened with ACELL/PRP. At one point it was thought these might lead to exciting new treatments with hair regeneration, but their benefit is marginal, if that, but that hasn't stopped docs everywhere from pushing them and charging $$$$ for something that is unproven.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thinning@30 View Post
    Online reviews and testimonials are very easy to fake. I tried the links you posted, but I don't speak Japanese. There don't seem to be any before and after photos. I also wouldn't rely on articles in the popular press or that appear on websites devoted to beauty and cosmetics. The reporting is often uninformed and the writers are more interested in clickbait traffic than reporting facts. I have to question what they mean when they say "clinically proven." Where, when, and by whom? How was efficacy demonstrated?

    This sounds like what happened with ACELL/PRP. At one point it was thought these might lead to exciting new treatments with hair regeneration, but their benefit is marginal, if that, but that hasn't stopped docs everywhere from pushing them and charging $$$$ for something that is unproven.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4379938/

    That is a link to one clinical study in English (it's been posted on this site before). That being said there have also been clinical studies that have demonstrated effectiveness for other kinds of treatment like LLLT which most customers find does basically nothing from what I can tell.

    I think Harg is probably a little more proven than PRP. It's been around as a hairloss treatment for longer (at least in Japan) and the number of clinics offering it has risen along with the number of patients taking it. If it was completely ineffective for everybody I don't think this would happen.

    You are of course correct to be skeptical though. If i had to guess I'd say that Harg probably offers modest results in a fair number of people but probably won't work well for guys with aggressive hair loss. In my case since my hair loss is relatively mild and my family history suggests that it won't be be too aggressive I think it might be worth the cost for me. If it just helps me maintain for 3 years or so that would be worth 5-10 thousand dollars. Of course since my hair loss is mild and I don't expect massive regrowth either way it would be difficult to measure success if i do the treatment unless it's either a wild success or a total failure.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neko View Post
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4379938/

    That is a link to one clinical study in English (it's been posted on this site before). That being said there have also been clinical studies that have demonstrated effectiveness for other kinds of treatment like LLLT which most customers find does basically nothing from what I can tell.

    I think Harg is probably a little more proven than PRP. It's been around as a hairloss treatment for longer (at least in Japan) and the number of clinics offering it has risen along with the number of patients taking it. If it was completely ineffective for everybody I don't think this would happen.

    You are of course correct to be skeptical though. If i had to guess I'd say that Harg probably offers modest results in a fair number of people but probably won't work well for guys with aggressive hair loss. In my case since my hair loss is relatively mild and my family history suggests that it won't be be too aggressive I think it might be worth the cost for me. If it just helps me maintain for 3 years or so that would be worth 5-10 thousand dollars. Of course since my hair loss is mild and I don't expect massive regrowth either way it would be difficult to measure success if i do the treatment unless it's either a wild success or a total failure.
    All I really want is for AAPE to maintain my current hair side effect free. If it can accomplish that then I can get an FUE and essentially be "cured"

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by LMS View Post
    All I really want is for AAPE to maintain my current hair side effect free. If it can accomplish that then I can get an FUE and essentially be "cured"
    Word

    I really hope it works for you. Lot's of respect for you for having the initiative and expertise to track this down for a reasonable price and do it yourself. If it doesn't work then at least you have the satisfaction of knowing you took action without having to hand serious cash over to a potential scam artist.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neko View Post
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4379938/

    That is a link to one clinical study in English (it's been posted on this site before). That being said there have also been clinical studies that have demonstrated effectiveness for other kinds of treatment like LLLT which most customers find does basically nothing from what I can tell.

    I think Harg is probably a little more proven than PRP. It's been around as a hairloss treatment for longer (at least in Japan) and the number of clinics offering it has risen along with the number of patients taking it. If it was completely ineffective for everybody I don't think this would happen.

    You are of course correct to be skeptical though. If i had to guess I'd say that Harg probably offers modest results in a fair number of people but probably won't work well for guys with aggressive hair loss. In my case since my hair loss is relatively mild and my family history suggests that it won't be be too aggressive I think it might be worth the cost for me. If it just helps me maintain for 3 years or so that would be worth 5-10 thousand dollars. Of course since my hair loss is mild and I don't expect massive regrowth either way it would be difficult to measure success if i do the treatment unless it's either a wild success or a total failure.
    Ahh that's the study I wanted to show nofintowin.

    Does that 49 year old man case not look below baseline at 4 months in? And maybe only slightly above baseline at 10 months in. Though at 2 years 1 month in his results are imo pretty astounding.

    That's why I'm 2 months in, seeing no sign of improvement but still remain cautiously optimistic. Nofintowin keep going man, AAPE might be a long game.

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