49 Year Old Norwood 2. Turkey, TR - 3000 grafts Micro Fue- Dr. T

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I have searched and searched over the last 2...

I have searched and searched over the last 2 months and read many reviews. Was going to do this 2 years ago but daughter got married so there went that savings :-). I am looking at 2500-2800 grafts based on lots of before/afters and overseas doctors opinions. US hair surgeons say I need 1200-1400 grafts but feel like they do not want to scare people due to costs, I do not think it's because of higher fallout rate overseas due to less skilled surgeons.

I struggle a bit because it semi-vain but researched and settled in on Dr Tayfun Oguzoglu for a variety of reasons:
1. ISHRS member
2. Professional- organized- very good responses.
3. PRP offered
4. Surgeon doing the extraction and design- alot of places are cheaper and more expensive- most of the cheap ones had assistants doing the extraction
5. Offered not to completely shave head- only donor area- a plus for me but not deciding factor

It's quite the trip for me. I traveled to Istanbul many years ago on business and the trip is no easy chore but the alternative low cost was Mexico and ISHRS surgeon there wanted to extract manually and was of course $$$ than Motorized surgeons. I read the pluses and negatives of each method (Manual vs motorized) and came to my conclusion they are about equal given fatigue factor for manual and less precise (potentially) for motorized.

The surgeon in Turkey are usually 1 euro per dollar per graft, Mexico was about $2.50/graft manual and well the US- it's $6-$11 per graft.

So I feel comfortable with my decision. The main part is I can not exercise for 14 days and will likely take 3 weeks off to be safe. I used pics from my 2012-2013 efforts posted here http://www.realself.com/question/atlanta-la-overseas-plastic-surgeon-specializing-fue and have not taken formal pre-op pics but will as the time draws near.

2 weeks out pictures

Promised to send Dr. T 2 weeks out pics and have attached them here. Was instructed not to cut my hair and have stopped any meds, even vitamins. I have bought Travel rest pillow for the long flights from the US. I have also purchased H2Ocean spray to keep area moist - it is used for tattoos mainly but has gotten very good reviews from hair transplant patients and doctors. I will take some with me, both in the non aerasol bottle but also dispense another one into a small bottle in case security grabs it. need to grad a few button down short sleeve shirts so i do not pull shirts over my head the first 2 weeks (being overly cautious)

Surgery complete

Will try to get the official pre-op pictures from Dr. Ts office. So here was the drill today.
Dr T. office is viewing distance from hotel (Eurasia). It's a 10 min walk but driver picks you up. I was picked up at 9am.

Arrive at Medistate hospital 9:10am- driver escorts you to 8th floor and process starts. For me, I was early and Dr. T was not here yet. They shot alot of before pictures- both full head of dry hair and wet. They asked if I wanted to wait for Doctor or shave my head. I shaved my head. They take off your shirt and buzz you and then wash your hair with what looks to be an iodine solution to make it sterile. Then more pictures. This took about 30 minutes form entrance to office to shaved head

They gave me a valium explaining the first set of anesthesia had some adrenaline in it. They took blood for PRP- first attempt to find a vein failed (Never happens to me)- but they switched arms and took the blood. They gave me 2 rounds of anesthesia across most of the back of my head (donor area is large). A lot of folks say this is most painful part of procedure- more on that later. The first round felt like a bee sting at times but “painful”- not really. A tad more than a dentist novacaine sting but they move very fast so that helps.
Dr T. showed up and did about 1/3 of the actual extractions, a senior tech did the rest with Dr. T stopping in occasionally. This was different than advertised. They used MicroFue (0.6-0.7) and I did not noticed a difference in technique/speed between the tech and Dr. T . There were 3 Techs in the room at all times- Punching- extracting and placing in Petri dish with Hypothermal solution
Extraction started at 9:45ish and finished at 11:30ish
Dr. T consulted with me and made the design- since I am NW2- it’s pretty apparent I need frontline and crown so I was ok with doing it this way post shave.

Dr T then did all the cuts on the head for the implants. He was very meticulous and took us well into lunch. I think we broke for lunch close to 12:30

I ate fast – went to bathroom and was called back at about 12:45 or so – nurses were ready. 2 Nurses/techs implanted the hairs with stops in by a senior tech and Dr. T . After a while this was the most discomforting part of procedure- they were taking their time and telling me to keep chin down in various body positions (all on my back). We were done at 3:00pm. They gave me meds and will go back tomorrow. I fly out early Wednesday morning as I have very long flight back to US and wanted some more healing time.
I have started to spay a bit with H2Ocean- one side has a deep implant or contusion where it will bleed so am being careful.

I plan to check my one bag of luggage to avoid lifting on trip back. Istanbul airport was a wrapping machine so I am good with that

Second day- Clean get ready for home- Overall review

Will send pictures when I get home. Today returned to have head washed and clean the bleeding area. They commented that the bleeding could be caused by the protein powder (high blood pressure)- I never heard of that and google did not come up with anything. They took the back gauze off and that was a bit painful- surprised me actually. I stopped pain meds the night before :-(. after the washing -cleaning I was given the post op instructions for next 2-4 weeks. They provided an itch creme as well as some propecia (1 year supply). I do not plan to take propecia due to potential side effects. I actually was on it once for a potential prostate issue and the potential side effects scared me back then. They re-wrapped the donor area in gauze and a head band over it to minimize the chance of face swelling from the anesthesia

I fell asleep back at the hotel for a bit (head was up) and noticed small blood dots on the gauze and was concerned the airline may not let me on :-). I used whats app for communication and it works great- SImge said to cut the band off and wet the gauze and remove it which I did. I used the H2Ocean spray which stung a bit in the back but will help prevent any issues.

What worked best for sleep is the hospital chucks they gave along with an inflatable airline pillow. I plan to save the last chuck for the flight across the Atlantic.

I am very tired and slept only a little bit over last 3 days so will not sleep the first flight into CDG and then sleep on the long flight to Atlanta.

Overall- experience was pretty great. I am comparing this to the 3 doctors I saw for consultation in the US a couple years back , one of which is well renowned. While I know truth is in the results which I will need to wait 1 year to fully see, the comments from US doctors on my other thread about overseas doctors was not true for Dr. T (they go by GetHair in Europe).

Next post will be after I get some pictures from Dr. T - maybe 1 week from now along with another update

1 Week Update

Technically 6 1/2 days but wanted to get an update out. I have posted pics. Biggest items as i knew was not being able to work out for another week. I have done alot of research on hair's potentially coming loose and consensus is generally 9 days. 5 days for pulling a hair and 9 days for a scab without the graft coming out. Still maintaining the plan of 14 day wait then gradual increase to full workout in 3 weeks. Items of interest:
1. H2OCean spray works well. The pictures are taken with flash so any redness will really show up. I am spraying 1 hour but with another sprayer ( I found that the H2Ocean spray is not a very fine mist)- so I spray into my bottle sprayer that I actually use (see pictures). if I feel any itch, I spray with plain water in between H2Ocean sprays.
2. I am still sleeping with an airline pillow until day 9 so there will not be any chance my transplants are in danger during sleep
3.Did alot of research on Propecia and men my age- it's effects are lower for older men and studies showing good gains were at 5mg/day.
4. I am starting to put the pre wash creme and shampooing per doctors instructions. Overdid it on the creme at first. I rinse with lukewarm water and a cup in bathtub

Next update in a week. i sent the doctor instructions on how to lower size of pictures without loosing too much resolution so hope to get some "official " pictures pre and post op

Picture of H2OCean Spray

Forgot to add picture of Sprayers and H2Ocean

2 Week Post Operation Update

Attached are the 2 week photos post op. The scab on front of forehead fell off right after taking these.

I have not picked etc at the scabs and followed post op instructions. I am spraying H2Ocean about every 30 minutes followed by water next 30 minutes. I left scabs till 14 days per instructions before gently massaging with shampoo in shower. I feel H2Ocean will resolve redness fully in front just like back soon. We will see.

I can finally work out again--WOOOHOOO!!!

1 Month Update

Here are my photos for 1 month post operation.
Some updates of note:
1. The numbness is not widely discussed post op. Top of head is still numb. Some have had this last for 7 months or so from what I have read. It's not really bothersome unless you rub up against something and then it feels totally weird.
2. Shock loss definitely noticeable on the front- it's expected
3. Did a whole bunch of research on preventing future hair loss. Can't post links here but here is what I am going with at least to start (you can google the stuff and find information if interested)
a. Nirozal shampoo- prescription strength out of Canada twice a week then Regenapure the other days
b. Super Zix II- morning and night
c. Azelaic acid + Oleic acid- morning and night

Propecia is a non-starter for me and I tried minoxidil a while back and not a fan either. If the above does not work will drop Super Zix for minoxidil but will wait at least 1 year.

2 Month Update

My hair is getting back to normal from the shave and awaiting the long wait for the 4-6 month period to see more visible improvement.

1. Numbness is alot better- at times I think it's gone but when I try to comb the hair I can feel that weird feeling.
2. Staying on the regiment of Nizarol and witches brew of home hair stuff (see previous post) to try to reduce DHT. Got some comments from last post on this I appreciated and I did more research for men my age, but for me- I am not taking an internal medication for hair loss (Propecia). It's personal choice as it is for everyone who takes it/other medication. If I need another procedure in 10 years- will decide then what to do.
3. Had some folks want me to recommend Docs etc- again it's personal choice and all I can say is go with your gut based on research, what you are looking for and what you are willing to pay. For me, it was not a heart transplant nor health affecting, so given the cost delta between the US and overseas, it was an easy choice for me. Then I found a doctor I was comfortable with.
4. I do have some hair that did not undergo shock loss (see frontal picture) and have a few pimples starting where the hair is trying to break the skin. I can't really see my crown that well, even when trying to take pictures myself (girlfriend took the monthly shots), so I can't see the progress/state there as well as the front.
5. Front of head still red- others have experienced this into the 6-7 month period. Does not bother me but I had hoped it would go away sooner- we will see what happens by 3rd month.

3 Month Update

Added dry and wet photos.
Today got my first haircut to level out my hair after the shave as they left a few areas higher than others- that is why my side and back are short. Lady who cuts my hair did not say anything :-) I usually went every 2 months - last visit was June 2nd.

Plus I figured it would be a better comparison for the folks out there looking if I did not have long hairs covering the transplant sites.

The numbness is almost gone! YAY!!!

Other than that- keeping my regiment of special shampoo and home cocktails going

4 month update

Hi All,
Included Wet and dry photos again - hair still coming in very slow BUT
if I wear my hair combed to the side I get "coverage" so it looks decent. It's no Donald Trump :-)
Of course the other side takes a hit and looks sparse but still doing my chemical regiment to thwart DHT. Being patient and glad that I have the "hmm- he looks sorta weird" stares behind me

Numbness is just about gone totally as it the redness from what I see

5 months

No much to report other than people are noticing something is different :-) I let my hair grow out so folks can see the effect of a dry head with longer hair 5 months out- plan for a haircut this week.

No wet pics this time

6 month review

6 months. still doing same and uploaded the dry hair pictures. Ash Wednesday- can you tell?

7 months

Letting my hair grow long for first time in 15 years or so. Still doing special shampoo regime and mixtures mentioned previously

Had to take these myself :-)

9 month pics

I skipped the 8 month pictures, still same look I think so I am just about done here. Won't get another transplant don't think. I do see more US based patients posting here well after the fact. Not knocking them/the doctors, but those who go that route, please realize you usually have 25-30% upfront non-refundable payment

12 months update-Final

I let my hair grow long and took pictures. This will be last update.

Overall well worth it, especially for the price/results- way better than if I had gone with US doctors. Having said that - it's a little dangerous out there and wish folks safe travels to Turkey if they decide that path.

Main Comments:
1. Use H2O Ocean Spray post surgery
2. Expect head to be numbish at least 6 months post op
3. Follow post op instructions at least till 10 days post surgery- it's permanent afterwards. Not saying to do crazy stuff but you do not have to baby it after 10 days
4. Talk to as many folks and read reviews beforehand. This is a personal decision that only you can make

Best of Luck to All
Turkey Hair Restoration Surgeon

Decided to give a rating after 2 months. Dr T and his staff did an excellent job and only time and my body's acceptance of the grafts permanently will decide if the procedure was worth it, but they were organized- professional-skilled. 5 stars all around except for time spent which in retrospect should have been expected but was not as advertised (extraction) - see day of surgery review. Very happy with decision and his staff is truly top notch.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
4 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 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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