Pre Op DAY 0 The big day finally arrived. I was not nervous at all the several months heading into the surgery - I had done my research, and knew I had made the right decision. Just as a quick aside for those interested in Dr. Rahal, he is a very in-demand Doctor, so make sure you manage your expectations with scheduling - I waited about 4 months from the day of my consult to the actual surgery. I was ready to go the very next day of my consuly, so keep this in mind. In my mind, world-quality means WAITING for world-quality.
I slept great the night before, no issues, but it wasn't until the morning that I began to feel a tad un-easy. Was I making the right decision? Was it worth it? How would I look 1 month from now? 2 Months? Will anyone at work notice? What if it doesn't work? Every step I took towards Dr. Rahal's clinic raised another question and the nerves started to shake. Very odd. Lucky for me, I was at Brookline, so it was only 2 blocks of nervousness. :)
I arrived at the clinic before 8 AM as instructed. The first thing that struck me was how professional the lobby was - it looked (and even smelled, haha) like a dentist's office. Great decor, and very professional. The lobby has a locked window cabinet with some products, such as Toppik, I looked at it as if it was a casket - really looking forward to NOT using this stuff after this.
I was greeted and instructed to sign some forms. Some of these forms were the same as the forms I had already signed and filled out for my online consult, but I filled them out regardless. This can be intimiadating, as the forms can be a bit scary - nothing life threatening, more just about managing expectations of what you'll get out of the process, and your normal waivers and managing your expectations of what you'll get.
Once the forms were signed, I met Dr. Rahal for an in-person consult. I had an online consult with a rep in February 2012 and a recommendation for 4500 grafts focusing on the forntal 2/3rds of my scalp. I was okay with this back in February after my online consult, but a few months later, I got in touch with my rep and advised I wish to change that, as I wanted to have my crown addressed as well in one swoop and just do a max surgery - get as many grafts as possible and go as back on my head as possible. He mentioned Dr. Rahal and I will discuss this prior to surgery. We discussed it, and Dr. Rahal suggested I do not address the crown right now due to my age and his desire to frame my face better with density and most importantly, manage my future donar grafts for when I am older. He did a very good job at managing my expectations, I really wanted to moon and more, and he brought me back into reality. :)
He said he'll get as many grafts as possible based on the donor size he wished to extract. I'll be honest, I was a little dissapointed at the time, it wasn't what I was expecting, but once he explained it to me, I put my trust in him to do what it best - based on my research, I knew he was making a recommendation what was best for me and managing my expectations which may have been over the top going into this meeting.
Below are some pre-op shots with the plan of action courtesy of Dr. Rahal.
I'll add some more text shortly and rotate the pics, sorry about that..