My name is Melanie, and I am writing to share my experiences having hair follicle grafting with Dr. Jeffrey Epstein, in Miami, Florida. I do not know how long this writing will turn out, but I will promise you all several things:
- My hair loss has caused me to cry a lot over the years
- Dr. Epstein and his staff treated me with compassion bordering on love
- Dr. Epstein's work looks so amazingly natural that NO ONE can tell that I have had follicle grafting, even after I choose to share it with people
- And finally, I will cry as I write this (in fact, the tears have already started, making it harder to see the stupid keyboard!)
I am a 43 year old woman, with an endocrine issue, which has lead to fluctuations in my hormones. In my 30's, I began to lose hair in the corners of my hair line, and it also began to recede. I have spoken with other women about this, and it is so devastating. People tell me that I'm pretty, but that is hard to see when I see my scalp. I've gotten really good at styling my hair to minimize the effects of the hair loss, but even that has limitations: When I put my hair in a ponytail, I have to be very careful to place my hair just right so the thinness is not apparent. I live in Florida and I can't go swimming, because when thin hair gets wet, the loss is really obvious.
This is Florida, and there are countless doctors performing surgeries of all kinds. And even among those who specialize in hair replacement, every skill level is represented down here. I wanted a surgeon who not only had a lot of experience, but who specifically had a lot of experience working on women. Dr. Epstein came highly referred by two other top plastic surgeons, and thus, in the spring of 2006, I had a consultation with him-at the same time I met Roxy, Dr. Epstein's office manager; this woman defines the word "love." Dr. Epstein asked me what my goals were with respect to my hair restoration, and through my tears, I said to put my hair in a ponytail again, to be normal. I think that it was then that he hugged me and said that WE'D get there.
In May of 2006, I had my first surgery, in which Dr. Epstein did about 1,950 grafts. Long story short, the days of plugs are OVER! He removed a strip of scalp from the area of the back of my head with really think hair density (by the way, it is nearly impossible to find the "donor area" once it healed!), and then his technicians removed the skin from each follicle using really cool microscopes. His staff are ALL professionals.
Once the follicles are prepared, Dr. Epstein uses tools that he designed himself to make tiny incisions into which the follicles (in groupings according to what looks the most natural) are placed. The whole process is nearly a miracle.
Fast forward a year, and I saw Dr. Epstein again, who felt that a touch up would be in order, and that really helped.
However three years later, I'd had some more loss, and on Friday, July 30, I met with Dr. Epstein and Roxy again, and we decided to do about another 1,150 to really thicken the areas which were the worst. Surgery was Wednesday, August 18, and I just can't wait until the follicles begin doing their thing (when they are first moved from the back of the head to the front of the head, they enter a temporary resting stage). I will be 44 in December; what a beautiful present to be able to see greater hair density for my birthday.and beyond.
I am very choosy as to whom I share this aspect of my life. IT IS EMOTIONALLY PAINFUL. Yet when I do, and as I mentioned earlier, because of Dr. Epstein's beautifully natural-looking work, even when I tell people, they are astonished; every graft simply looks natural.
Finally a few words about Dr. Epstein and his staff, but on a personal level: The other day I thanked Dr. Epstein for becoming a doctor, for this is what I believe he is best suited for in life. He has so very much added to my quality of life; in truth, I cannot thank him enough. Roxy, heart is only surpassed by her AMAZING ability to color coordinate; I love her.
To the staff Cindy, Susie, Peggy, Linda and Candy (and to those whose names I have forgotten, pleased forgive me!!!), you too are all amazing.
To put this all together in a neat little bow, God bless Dr. Epstein and his staff. My thinning hair was not only treated by one of the top hair restoration surgeons (and his staff) in the world, but on top of that I was treated with love, respect and compassion.
With deepest gratitude and affection,