Is a consultation even worth it? - Page 2 - BaldTruthTalk.com
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  1. #11
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    jamesst11, thanks for mentioning Koray Erdogon. I am not sure if he is in LA but I am going to research him anyways. It can't hurt to more familiar with more doctors and the possible results!

  2. #12
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    Based on your pics, unless you're going to be OK with a think look, I wouldn't bother

  3. #13
    Doctor Representative JoeTillman's Avatar
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    Based on what I see in your photos, and going on only that, I think you are a good surgical candidate.

    BUT, that's not all that has to be considered. You have two options for surgery, FUSS and FUE, and you have one issue that has to be addressed before all others. Medication.

    What are you doing, or will you do, to keep from losing the hair you have now? You still have a healthy amount of hair at the top, it's just receded and there is reduced density, but it appears to still be contributing to the aesthetic, especially if you grow it out. Being 30 years old you are in a fairly good position if you respond well to Propecia or Proscar (cut into quarters) and/or Rogaine. You can't add more hair before you stabilize the hair you have now so if you are not considering prevention then don't have a hair transplant until you do or if you choose not to take meds at all. If the latter, just walk away.

    You are in a precarious situation and are susceptible to what anyone with self driven motives will tell you. You are just starting your research and have to even ask if a consultation is necessary. They are, absolutely, but you need to do a lot of reading and speaking to people that have had hair transplants before you call your first clinic. Once you set foot in a clinic, even before this actually, they are potentially prepping for your arrival. The consultant will want to know as much about you before you arrive as possible so be prepared for a lot of questions just to make an appointment. This isn't standard but it is common.

    James asked me to post a photo I put together several years ago. It shows what 5000 grafts would look like at full density if placed into an area of hair loss roughly similar to what is visible in your photos.



    When I made this image, I photoshopped my own hair out to give you an image of a NW6. The size of the strip of hair is roughly the size of the donor strip that is taken if your surgeon pulls out a strip large enough to yield 5000 grafts. Normally, these grafts have to be dissected and then distributed throughout the scalp. If they are not dissected and remain at normal density then this is the area it will cover. Make sense?

    I wrote a 2000 word blog post about your initial question that covers a lot more of what to expect during a consultation and I have a hair transplant glossary that is the largest you'll find on the web to help you understand what you're reading. Go to my website in my signature and read up. Use this forum and listen to the Bald Truth where Spencer Kobren and I talk about issues regarding hair loss and hair transplantation. You can even call in and ask us questions live, every Tuesday.

  4. #14
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    Hey! Thanks so much for the in depth response! It is much appreciated!

    Just want to clear up a few things. I have been researching hair lose since my early twenties when I started losing my hair. I guess I could have been more clear with that. And I do realize that one can't have a HT without a consultation. That question was centered around having to pay for one. I would go back and change the title of the thread now if I could to reflect the actual question (and others) that I asked. But alas, it's a little late for that. (-;' Anyway, with that question I was hoping to get responses from people who have done so and if they felt it was worth the money they invested. At least one doctor I am looking at charges $100 for his consultations. The plus side is he will apply it to your bill if you go with him.

    I am not currently nor have I ever taken any medication, topical or oral, to prevent hair loss. However, I do understand what they do and the potential side effects of each. If I do decide to have surgery, I will trust my doctor's advice in the best course of action.

    You are right about me being in a precarious position. As I stated in an ensuing post, I am the type of person who is easily swayed. This is part of the reason I started this specific thread in the first place. I wanted a good rundown of the process so I know what to expect and keep my wits about me. And not get drawn in by some quack who is going to promise me the moon and the stars and then leave me deformed. Horror stories abound the arena of hair transplants. I don't want to be part of one.

    This image is very interesting. In all honesty it makes this whole situation look rather hopeless. That's not necessarily a bad thing, though. It's always good to have a firm grasp on the reality of things.

    I look forward to reading your blog to get an even better perspective on the consultation process and perusing the glossary to pick up anything I might have missed through the years! Thanks again, Joe.

  5. #15
    Doctor Representative JoeTillman's Avatar
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    Thanks for clarifying. I address your issue of paying or not paying in my blog but in summary, I support the idea of charging for consultations. The idea of free consultations is almost foreign in other elective cosmetic surgical procedures so there is no reason why hair restoration should be any different. As long as you research whom you are consulting well in advance you won't be wasting your money.

    Regarding medication, I'm going to be blunt. Had you started taking finasteride when you were younger, there is a very strong chance that you would not be here asking these questions. At the very least, my gut tells me you'd maybe be searching for hairline work but not in need of so much coverage. It is a preventative medication and you cannot prevent loss if it's already happened.

    In fact, being 30 and having this much hair loss I recommend that if you aren't going to start soon then you should forget having surgery altogether. You'll only continue to lose more and will wind up chasing this additional loss. If you were to stabilize your loss now then I would also recommend that you turn down the notion of a megasession larger than 3000 grafts and don't try to cover everything at once. There are clinics that do larger sessions on a regular basis but they don't always work out and when you throw so much donor hair at your loss at one time, and the result doesn't turn out like you hoped, you just blew the majority of your donor hair in one shot and you won't have enough left to properly correct the problem AND give you the result you initially wanted.

    1. Talk to your doctor about getting on Propecia.
    2. Don't have surgery without it or at least Rogaine and then knowing that your loss has stabilized.
    3. Don't try to do everything in one shot because you don't want to be "that guy" that tried and failed in one go.

  6. #16
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    Thanks again for another thorough response! It's refreshing to see someone who willing to help another out with nothing to gain. Especially since I am the one being helped out. (-;'

    At this point in my life I am totally accepting of my hair loss. And I would hope so after 10 years, give or take, to work through it. As for medication. I realize things would be different if I had taken them when I was younger. But I can't change the past. So, for me it has always seemed so counter productive to have the conversation about when I should have started. It's one of the reason I think it took me so long to join a forum like this. There's a lot of people talking about when other should have started what treatment and how they themselves wish they had started earlier. And all of that is shrouded in this kind of judgement that because I or other didn't start medical treatments earlier somehow how we're not as serious about wanting to better ourselves. It doesn't help anyone or anything. It certainly was off putting to me in the past. But those were my issues and I have worked through them. I am happy to be here now and having this discussion. With that said, I do really appreciate your evaluation of my medical history. I will keep it in mind in case it can help me in the process going forward.

    If I do this, I am in it for the long haul. Meaning I will have more than one surgery and it will take several years. In general, I have imagined a 4-5 year timeline with 3 surgeries. The first to tackle reestablishing a hairline. The second to deal with the mid forlock and crown. And the third to touch up and add more density to the front IF there is enough hair left to do so. But this is the kind of thing where the doctor comes in. He will tell me how much with which I have to work. Trust me, I do not want to be "that guy."

    Thanks again for your response. I am gonna head over now and take a look at this blog!

  7. #17
    IAHRS Recommended Hair Transplant Surgeon WHTC Clinic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChaseTheMusical View Post
    I'm sorry guys. While I appreciate everyone's advice, perhaps including my background story has blinded everyone from my main reason for this post. I am wondering what people's consultations were like? I have asked a few questions already but a few more could be: How long was your consultation? Who did you consult with? Did they just tell you what they could do with out much input from you? Who did you talk money with, the doctor or someone else?

    Again, thank you to everyone who has posted thus far. I will take everything you've said into consideration. (-;'
    This is the best place to address your concerns about hair restoration and the consultation process. Whatever you decide, get more than one consultation and communicate what you want to achieve with the doctor or patient advisor. You can make progress if you are realistic about your goals and management of expectations.

    All the best.
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