Lisa is only 30 years old and doesn’t have any mirrors in her home. All her hair is gone now, as are her eyelashes and eyebrows, and looking at her reflection is just too painful. Lisa suffers from alopecia universalis, which is simply defined as the loss of all hair from the body and head. For a relatively young woman such as Lisa, this is a devastating hit. She has lost all confidence, rarely goes out with friends anymore, and never dates. She feels destined to be alone for the rest of her life. What she doesn’t yet know, however, is there is hope.
Hair follicle growth happens in cycles, and at the end of each cycle, the hair falls out. At the start of the next cycle, hairs start to grow again, and the cycle continues. Although the causes of alopecia are still a mystery, we do know that a disruption in the growing phase of the cycle results in an abnormal loss of hairs, to never grow back. Some alopecia patients lose only the hair on their head, but alopecia universalis means complete hair loss on head and body.
Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis Feels Your Loss
When a friend suggested Lisa attend a support group for women suffering from alopecia universalis , it was there she met a young woman who still had all her hair, lashes and brows. Confused, Lisa approached her, asking if she had alopecia universalis, and if so, how was she able to have all her hair. The woman pulled off her wig, revealing her bald head. But Lisa still didn’t understand how the woman could still have eyelashes and eyebrows. The woman, Bella, explained to Lisa the lashes were false eyelashes, but that her brows were drawn on her from a procedure called “permanent makeup” — not unlike getting a tattoo. Lisa begged for more information, and listened intently to her story. Bella met Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis through another support group member, and he changed her life. Bella told Lisa how Dr. Krikorian practices “Dermapigmentation,” or cosmetic tattooing, and created her perfectly arched eyebrows. They were done with permanent makeup and would be hers forever. Lisa was immediately intrigued.
Is It Going To Hurt?
Lisa made an appointment with Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis the next day, and was in his office the following week for a consultation. He immediately put her at ease, and explained the permanent eyebrow procedure. To create Lisa’s permanent eyebrows, he would use a hand-held device equipped with a very thin needle filled with an organic pigment of permanent color. The device punctures the brow area hundreds of times per minute, embedding the permanent pigment beneath the skin. Lisa was excited, but expressed some concerns about pain. Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis reassured her there were pre-procedure anesthetics he can apply that greatly limit any pain, and that most patients only feel discomfort. But Lisa knew that any discomfort from the pain would be greatly less than the pain she felt not having any brows at all. Lisa scheduled her procedure, and on the way home stopped and bought a mirror.