Need opinion on which Doctor to choose for FUE Transplant
Doctor Answers 4
You should at least meet or talk to your doctor before traveling to Turkey for your surgery.
Patient from Los Angeles would like a recommendation for a hair transplant surgeon in Turkey
Thank you for posting your question. Hair restoration is its own specialty in this modern era, with some experts in the field that have trained in surgery for many, many years. There are some physicians who perform hair restoration who have not had a single minute of surgery training. It simply isn't required.
There’s an old saying that goes something like “you get what you pay for” and because a surgical hair restoration is a complex surgical procedure involving a surgeon and an entire team of assistants, it’s not exactly a trivial endeavor. Further, your relationship with your chosen hair restoration surgeon is a long-term one, because hair loss is progressive and will be with you the rest of your life, like tooth decay. He or she will be there to assist you in preventing further hair loss, and there to perform additional surgeries as hair loss continues. If you’re travelling to a foreign country to have a permanent cosmetic surgery performed that will change the way you look forever, I don’t know if you’ll have ready access to that foreign surgeon like you would someone in your own country.
Hair restoration surgery is a highly detailed, complicated set of services, not a manufactured product off the shelf. The good thing about the results from a hair restoration procedure is that the results are permanent. The bad thing about the results from a hair restoration procedure is that the results are permanent. About once every 6 weeks or so I see a patient in my office who underwent a highly-discounted procedure in India or Turkey, and I must say in 13 years of practicing exclusively hair restoration surgery I have never in my career seen larger scars in the donor area (eg: ear to ear in length, 1 to 2 inches in width), more uneven hairlines, or more unhappy patients. Clearly this is not a blanket statement about the abilities of surgeons in those respective countries, but merely a small sample of the patients that happen to come into my office to ask me to correct the work that was done by physicians in those countries. Often this is simply not even possible, and patients are quite upset to learn this news.
However, if your heart is set on going to a different continent for your cosmetic surgery, clearly the best way to approach this is to have a personal meeting with each surgeon at their clinic, so you can get a feel for the surgeon, his staff, his philosophy regarding hair restoration, examine the operating room, and otherwise do basic due diligence to assure yourself that you are getting what you think you are getting. So, perhaps a pre-surgery trip to Turkey is indicated to visit with several providers.
I hope this information is helpful to you.
Wants hair transplant in Turkey
When and if something goes wrong, a doctor in Turkey can’t follow you, if the transplant does not work you have no recourse, no Yelp, no Realself with doctor references and credentials, no Chamber of Commerce or Medical Board to complain to. If there are serious complications what will you do? Do you know how many people died in Turkey because of malpractice errors in anesthesia? Many of these clinic surgeries and the anesthesia given, are performed, not by doctors, but by technicians. What you are buying are technicians doing surgery without a medical degree of any type - and no skill to manage problems that happen. My group has performed over 15,000 surgeries since 1992 (no deaths) and have seen health issues arise, but with my extensive training and education I know how to recognize problems before they become life-threatening. We monitor our patients' heart and breathing to anticipate problems, do the Turkey clinics do this? Do you think that these uneducated technicians doing your surgery will know how to do mange problems that arise?
Now let’s talk about the FUE itself. Hair transplants always reduce your hair donor supply so the real cost is the hair that will be wasted if things go wrong or if the hair does not grow. You have a limited donor supply that disappears every time you are transplanted. If you believe that I am an expert as the original pioneer of FUE, believe me that 3000+ FUE grafts always removes either (1) hair outside the permanent zone [which means it will not last] or (2) the FUEs were taken too close to each other which will damage the donor area [your remaining hair supply]. Deaths have been reported from hair transplant anesthesia throughout the world. There are discount services available even in West Los Angeles, one of them 'killed' a man a while back. He came to them because they only charged $1.50/graft. Not a bargain. What assurance of safety is there for your survival, your health, and last but not least, the success of the FUE you are having done? I always tell people that if the surgery doesn't kill you, the hair that you have put on your head will be there for everyone to see as long as you live. There are reports coming out of Europe that some of the FUE transplants out of Turkey don’t have more than one hair cycle of growth. I can speculate on the cause of this, but alas, with all that said, go for it - if what I said makes no difference to you.
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Getting hair transplant in an unregulated country
The hair transplant has to be taken from an area from the back of the head called the donor zone . The donor hair in the donor zone is limited and has to be handled with utmost care. There many detailed factors that are involved in hair transplantation both in the harvesting of the grafts and in the incisions in the recipient area. If any one of those details are not done correctly, then the implanted hair will not grow, and your donor hair is wasted and you are left with a scar. The presence of a medical doctor is the key ingredient to assure that all the steps are done properly and prevent complications.
In many cases these clinics are run by non medical staff and there are no doctors present during the procedure. In some cases, the doctor only shows up for the initial design. During the procedure, many of the clinics use only assistants without any medical training to do the whole procedure including, cutting, harvesting, incisions, and placements. These skills require many years of surgical training and experience to be performed properly. If any of the steps is compromised, not only will it effect the outcome of hair transplant procedure, it may cause serious problems for the patient.
If your decision is just based on the cost and you are willing to take the risk then having hair transplant at an unregulated country could be for you. But before choosing a clinic for your transplant procedure, do research and find a quality clinic with experienced doctor who is present during the procedure to be sure that the proper care is taken. In addition proper follow up care is necessary for after the procedure. Will the clinic be available for after the procedure care? Ask questions about the doctor's experience, background and affiliations to any medical organizations. You need to make sure that the doctor and its staff have proper training to do the procedure.
If you do proper research you may find a quality clinic in the states that would meet your expectations and have reasonable cost that is close to your budget. Some clinics in the states may have seasonal discounts that may fit your budget but still give you quality care. Remember If the cost is the only factor, whatever you pay for a bad transplant is way too much.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.