Question #1: Dr. Epstein, I and my friends all watched your performance on Bravo TV–and we all watched with great interest.
Neither of us had ever seen a reality TV show before. I know you will be busy responding to fan mail, but we had many questions:
1. Will the transplanted hair fall out (does it actually grow back?).
YES, IT FALLS OUT AFTER 3 WEEKS OR SO, THEN STARTS TO REGROW IN 3 TO 4 MONTHS, WHERE IT WILL CONTINUE TO DO SO FOR A LIFETIME
2. How long do these treatments last–are they dependent on the necessary blood flow problems that might have given rise to the hair loss in the first instance?
PERMANENT. BALDNESS IS NOT DUE TO ALTERED BLOOD FLOW- IT IS A GENETIC PROCESS WHERE HAIRS IN CERTAIN PARTS OF THE SCALP (THE AREAS OF MALE PATTERN HAIR LOSS) ARE GENETICALLY PRONE TO THE EFFECTS OF A BREAKDOWN PRODUCT OF TESTOSTERONE CALLED DIHYDROTESTOSTERONE (DHT). THE HAIRS FROM THE DONOR AREA (TYPICALLY THE BACK AND SIDES OF THE SCALP) ARE DIFFERENT GENETICALLY, AND THUS DO NOT FALL OUT. TRANSPLANTED TO THE AREAS OF THE BALDNESS, THESE DONOR HAIRS WILL CONTINUE TO GROW.
3. It seemed that the patient left your office wearing a bandana but the scalp looked as if it was still bleeding slightly. Is that because of the procedure was not actually performed in real time–he didn’t leave soon after the procedure was finished?
BY THE TIME THE PATIENTS LEAVE THE OFFICE AFTER A 4 TO 6 HOUR TYPICAL PROCEDURE, THERE IS LITTLE IF ANY BLEEDING EXCEPT FOR SOMETIMES FROM THE DONOR AREA.
5. Do you and your staff normally perform these procedures without wearing masks or, again, was that because it was more aesthetically interesting to watch the unmasked master perform his magic?
THE INCIDENCE OF INFECTION WITH TRANSPLANT PROCEDURES IS VIRTUALLY NIL.
UNLIKE MANY OTHER TRANSPLANT DOCTORS, WE ACTUALLY PERFORM THESE PROCEDURES USING STERILE TECHNIQUE. HOWEVER, I DO NOT REQUIRE MASKS, FOR THEY DO NOTHING TO REDUCE THE ALREADY MINIMAL RISK OF INFECTION.
6. The woman seemed to walk into the surgical room while the procedure was underway? Is that usual, or again, a conceit of reality TV?
REALITY TV. THE PROCEDURE WAS ALREADY OVER AND THE CAMERAS CONTINUED
7. Did you know that she was going to essentially come on to you while you were performing surgery? Is there some kind of a script going on the entire way? For instance, surely you must have known in the first segement that the patient was going to consent to having the procedure done.
NOTHING WAS SCRIPTED FOR THE MOST PART. I DID KNOW THAT MICHAEL WAS GOING TO HAVE HIS PROCEDURE (HE’S BEEN A FRIEND OF MINE FOR SEVERAL YEARS) BUT WE DID HAVE A REAL CONSULTATION.