Blogs Biopsy, Wigs and Acceptance - an Update from Rosemary It's been a while since I wrote my last blog for Alopecia UK so I thought I'd do a quick update on how things are going in my hair loss/wig journey. Update 1 - Biopsy I had a routine appointment with my dermatologist in 2022, after looking at my bald patches on the sides of my head, she thought it had patterns of alopecia areata, so we discussed the pros and cons of having a biopsy and we decided together that it was worth doing one. She still thought the hair loss across my forehead is Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia due to the scarring and texture. I had my biopsy a few weeks later on the side of my head. When I entered the room for the biopsy they explained what was about to happen which put me at ease. I put my hair up so he could see where it was best to take the sample from. As it would be leaving a scar he wanted to find a good spot. We decided above my left ear would be a good place. The nurse injected the site to numb it, that hurt a little bit but only a pinching feeling like any normal injection you have. Once I was numb he started the process, I thought I could feel something but I think it's because it was so close to my ear so the sound made it worse. I closed my eyes and it was over 5 minutes later. He used suturing stitches which meant I could still wash my hair and not worry too much about getting them wet. My husband was waiting for me in the car park, I sat down in the car and cried, not because it was in pain but because I was relieved it was over and I guess I was sad too, sad because having alopecia sucks sometimes! Once the anaesthetic had worn off it felt quite tight, I got the stitches taken out a week later and the relief was instant! The nurse who took them out said the nurse who had put them had done it very tight and he had caught some of my hair in it too, so no wonder it felt tight and slightly uncomfortable. The results This was a little bit frustrating, they initially told me 6 weeks, which I could understand, it's not a life threatening need of urgency for them and I was told the pathologist was busy with more pressing matters. I had my biopsy taken at a different doctor's surgery than my normal GP surgery, the results got a little lost and I was waiting for quite a bit longer than the expected 6 weeks. The results said 'alopecia areata' - I cried again because I had just accepted that I had frontal fibrosing alopecia so to be told it was another type of alopecia surprised me. When I went back to the doctor's to go through my results with the dermatologist she said I've just got alopecia and not to worry too much about what type/kind! I was told that unless I wanted treatment there isn't much she can do for me but I was welcome back anytime if I had any other hair loss or worries about my alopecia. I showed her my Instagram account and she told me how amazing it looked and how great it was that I had accepted my hair loss. I told her that having this hair loss community on Instagram was like having another family, ones that understand what it feels like to have hair loss and who I can turn to. So, I now say to people I have two different types of alopecia; Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia and Alopecia Areata because I'm special 😉 Update 2 - Wigs I woke up on the day of my 36th birthday in 2022 and ordered my first custom wig from a company in Germany. My wig arrived in December 2022, the hair line is amazing and it made me so happy to be able to take photos of myself without a wonky hair line! After I got my first wig, I decided to buy another one from a company in the UK, the addiction is real! The wig is absolutely gorgeous but unfortunately the lace is too itchy for me. I have gone down the route of human hair wigs for a few reasons, I have a large head and there aren't many options in synthetic wigs on the market that I've seen. Hopefully in time that might change but I also don't need the fullness that you get with a wig, it needs to be as low density as it can possibly be. I also have scarred and really sensitive skin so I need to be careful with the lace and ear tabs. I have tried toppers but they didn't give me the coverage I needed so for me, a wig was my only option at this point. I have recently started looking into medical caps and a company from Belgium are sending me two different medical caps to see how they feel on my head before I go down the route of spending lots of money on something that might not work. So far it's been an expensive lesson but I now feel like I know what I want/need in a wig whilst having scarring hair loss across my forehead and bald patches down the sides of my head. Update 3 - Me, myself and I I often get told that I don't need a wig and that my hair loss isn't that bad. It's so hard to explain to someone who has never experienced hair loss how that makes me feel but I know I'm beautiful with or without hair and wigs. Thank you for taking the time to read my quick update. I'm still on Instagram (@when.will.it.stop.falling.out) if anyone wants to talk, or my email address is [email protected] if you aren't on Instagram.