Extremely Painful - Long Recovery - Tampa, FL

I had the Hair Restoration done in June after...

I had the Hair Restoration done in June after doing research about options for African American women with frontal hair loss. I found a doctor who has over 20 years of experience. The Doctor and her staff were extremely professional and GUARANTEED I'd see results in 1 year. I decided to go ahead with the procedure after speaking to another patient who has had the procedure done three times (she suffers from alopIicia) and was happy with her results.

Pre Surgery: I informed the Doctor that I was leaving for vaca in July and question how much time I would need to recover. She said two weeks so I had plenty of time before my surgery and my vacation. As I know now that is totally not true. Yes, I was able to go on vacation; however the front of my hairline was completely covered in scabs and flaky. I wish I had waited, or was told to wait until I returned. The area was (and still is) extremely sensitive and I was not able to do much with my hair as far as styling goes.

The Surgery: Personally, I found the procedure almost unbearable- and I have a high tolerance for pain. At one point, as they neared the edge of my hairline, I wanted to walk out because I couldn't take it anymore. All I could do is cry. The staff was comforting and tried their best to ease the pain. Nothing worked. Yes, I was given a valium and they constantly numbed all the areas they worked in- but I felt everything. I hated hearing my scalping being cut- it was totally unsettling to say the least.

Post Surgery: Things went down hill after I got home. My face was completely swollen from the saline they injected in the hairline. I was warned there was going to be some swelling- but I looked like an alien for two whole weeks! The saline shifted from the top of my head, to the left side then to the bottom. I looked like a had a severe allergic reaction for two weeks- I didn't want to leave the house or even be seen by my fiancee. Secondly, I was in sooo much pain in both the front and back of my head. What made matters worse is that I couldn't keep any of the medication down. I called the doctor because I thought I needed to be rushed to the ER. She was comforting and talked my fiancee through what he could do. I don't remember, but somehow I managed to sleep for two hours-in pain. The next morning I was able to take the pain medication which helped slightly. I didn't sleep for two weeks. The back of my head where the hair was removed was so tight, it throbbed every night until the stitches were removed.

Two Months Post Surgery:
I'm not in any pain and all the scabs/wounds/flaking has ceased. It's difficult to style my hair as the hair has not grown in as yet. I wear a head scarf every day to cover the area which is almost completely bald.There is a bit of numbness in the area that the implants were placed- just dosnt' feel right. I've decided and was advised not to relax my hair which poses another major styling dilemma. I've had to cut my hair because the drainage around the scares matted my hair in the back. Also, the second line of my scalp that was removed to harness the hair graphs seems to have left a wide visible scare- I want it restitched because it's way too obvious. So now I have two problem areas instead of one...

I have a post op with my doctor today and I'll be able to ask her if my hair line looks as it should and ask about the large scare left in the back of my head.

I wish I had a smaller "test" area done before doing my whole frontal hairline. Anyhow, from what I have read there will not any hair growth for three months. I'll update my progress in the fall-hopefully I'll see some results for the pain I endured for this procedure because right now I'm wishing I hadn't done it!

Dear Bunny, Don't mean to put you on the spot, but just wanted to confirm if your doctor was Marina Pizarro. I recently had a consultation with her but left feeling very uneasy. Her answers to my questions during my appointment were not very clear or convincing and her before and after pictures of her patients were not very impressive considering she has been in the industry for so long. I had a procedure up north and it went very well. Minimum pain and a very nice result. I'm looking to do another one but looking for someone closer and have been researching some options. I'm sorry to hear your experience was not very good. How did your overall results turn out? Would you go back to the same doctor? I'd appreciate your confirmation. Thanks.
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Hello NewDo,

Your experience sounds all to familiar. I remember the pain and the experience. I have a high tolerance for pain, but I think you put it correctly stating that nothing can prepare you and that the procedure is torture. Personally, I will never do it again. The bedside manners of my Doctor and her team were okay, they were friendly and professional and did what they could to keep me comfortable during the procedure. One think I wasn't too thrilled to learn was that her team did the work..she seem to only supervise which was a bit disappointing now that I think back. It makes me wonder if more hair towards my edges would have grown back by now.

So its been 9 months after the surgery. I have a patch of hair in the back that did not grow back and I don't think it every will. It's not noticeable because of where it is, but I know its there. My hair line has improved. I'm not sure $3,500 worth which was the price I paid for 3000 graphs I believe. I'm still hoping more will fill in in the very front of my hairline...

I think I need to look at my before pictures that the doctor took to really compare. At the moment, I don't see a drastic enough difference to justify the pain nor the cost.

I do hope your are feeling back to normal. Thankfully I was not working at the time of the procedure so I had plenty of time to hide from the world while my face returned to normal (which for me took almost a full two weeks...if not longer).
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Btw, my surgery cost $7800 and took a total of 7 hours to complete. Also i see that your hair matted around the donor site because of the fluids leaking in the area, however as a part of my treatment i returned to the doctors office the very next day to have my hair shampooed and conditioned ( i brought my own Dudleys products with me of course). They cleaned my donor and transplanted sites and removed all blood from my hair. I think maybe the doctor you chose may have had something to do with some of your negative experience besides the pain. That is a beast in itself. I'll keep updating my progress as time goes by.
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Now, I can say without a doubt that I do not think...

Now, I can say without a doubt that I do not think the surgery is worth the pain nor the cost. Most of the hair transplanted has thinned out, and I see the pores from each hair follicle that is no longer there. I've now use a product to fill in the thinner areas around my hairline. Also, I ended up losing hair around the donor site.
Sorry about your experience.. How has it filled in now?
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Dr. Pizarro, Either your memory is failing, your records are not very accurate or your level of honesty is questionable. I had a hair surgery with you in 2010 and received 3000 plugs and paid $9000. Results were not anywhere close to what you promised, so i can relate to jbrooks2011. I will not return to you for another session because I went through too much pain for such bad results. Instead of addressing Bunny602s statement, you make a very weak attempt of deviating from responsibility....you should be ashamed!
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Allln76, i agree. Dr. Pizarro has yet to contact me nor address my experience. Everytime I look at my hairline I am reminded that I made a horrible decision. Thankfully there are a few products that help cover huge pours and missing patches of hair.
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Dr. Pizarro

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1 out of 5 stars Overall rating
2 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
2 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
1 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
1 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
2 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
2 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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