A new resource for the Transgender community courtest of Ms. Sophie Boone.
The initial consultation was free. My hair loss was graded as anterior stage 3 on the Hamilton Norwood scale. That is not a particularly significant amount of hairloss, more like a very well defined "M" shaped hairline. Personally I thought it was closer to stage 2. The scale goes up to 7 (imagine Friar Tuck).
In order to fill it in and give me a rounded hairline, and also advance it about 1/2", they decided that 1500 follicles would work. The cost is per follicle and the normal price is $4 per. Surgery was scheduled for two weeks later and they booked me for six hours.
Two days before surgery they called in four prescriptions to my pharmacy: Valium, Vicodin, an antibiotic and a steroid. The valium was to relax you during the process (a lot of people go to sleep) and the Vicodin was for pain afterwards. As I take a daily aspirin they asked me to stop seven days prior.
The day of surgery they brought me into the "operating room". I was asked to disrobe from the waist up (you can keep your bra on) and given a gown and wrapped up in towels (you get a LOT of saline solution sprayed on your head). They measured the hair density at the donor site to get an idea of how large a chunk to carve out for donor follicles. I am blessed with pretty decent hair, they said the density was really high which is good as it results in a smaller
incision. The site was trimmed of hair pretty closely and they numbed up the donor location as well as where the transplants were going to go. The incision was about 4" long and then sewn up. I go back in a week to have the stitches removed.
Then, while a couple technicians started separating the donor tissue into individual follicles the implant site had a lot of tiny incisions made in it and then they started inserting hairs, follicle by follicle, for hours. I didn't feel any pain throughout the entire procedure and I zonked out for a couple hours due to taking the Valium. They brought me drinks throughout the procedure (Krispy Kreme coffee!) And fed me a wonderful lunch. The sedative had worn off by the time I was ready to leave and I was able to drive myself home. If you are more susceptible to the effects of Valium it would be better to have someone drive you.
You can't wash your hair for a day or so after the procedure, which was a bummer as they slick your hair back with a lot of conditioner to keep it out of the way. Then you can very gently wash it until the stitches come out. There has been a little pain so far but it's been easily dealt with by taking Motrin (I'm saving the Vicodin for electrolysis).
I have to comment that I was treated with the utmost courtesy, respect and professionalism by everyone I dealt with there. It make take up to a couple months to see how well it worked. For some one with greater hair loss than mine you may well have to do it over several sessions.
Blessings and Love,
Monday, June 28, 2010
Posted by De Sube at 6/28/2010 02:34:00 PM