As never before, Turkey has become a popular destination for people who want to have hair transplantation. The following chart shows the annual increase of the number of British who are considering having their hair transplant in Turkey.

For example, George, a Londoner who decided to have his hair restoration surgery in Turkey because this procedure is too expensive in England:

“The hair transplantation procedure would cost me 10 000 GBP in England. I had the same hair restoration surgery in Turkey for 2000 GBP, and I am really happy with the results and the service I received.

So, is everyone who has hair transplant in Turkey satisfied with the procedure? What are the risks? What should people pay attention to when looking for a hair transplantation clinic in Turkey? We have asked these questions to Dr. Meltem Şentürk, the dermatologist and owner of DK that have been operating in Turkey since 2002.

What would you tell to the patients, so that they don’t regret and say “I wish I knew it before”?

People who have their hair transplantation at a young age, when the hair loss still continues, can face the insufficiency of donor areas. It makes the second hair transplant impossible, and they say “I wish I didn’t have my hair transplanted before.”

We also have patients who come to our clinic after a bad hair transplant experience. Some of them have scars left on their scalps. These patients say “I wish I had preferred another clinic in the first place” or “I wish I did a better research before choosing a clinic”.

Yes, hair transplantation prices in Turkey are affordable, but when you see a very low price like 600-700 Euros all inclusive, you should get suspicious. Obviously, there are too many complaints from people who have their hair transplant in such centers. Too many “I wish I knew it before…”

Some centers, instead of focusing on hair transplantation quality try to market their service through  ’great accommodation’, ’VIP transfer service’ and ‘hair care products’ that they offer together with hair transplant.

We know that in some cases there is a scar left under the hair. You must have seen such cases. Is there really a solution in this case? Or should this risk of hair transplantation be considered?

There is a risk in every aesthetic intervention as well as hair transplantation. The goal of a clinic is to take all possible measures to minimize these risks.

If too many grafts are harvested from a limited donor area, scars are most likely to be left in that area. In cases like this we gently explain to the patient that his/her donor area is too limited, and recommend giving up on hair transplant or propose to have two operations with a one year interval.

Thus, in the first session we harvest some grafts from the donor area and transplant them to bold areas. And 1 year later at the second session we first check the recovery status of the donor area and perform the second transplant operation only if it is eligible. The second operation increases the hair density.

This way we reduce the risk of scarring to a minimum.

The idea of ​​going to another country for hair transplant frustrates some people. What would you recommend them?

We have seen that most of the foreign hair transplant patients in Turkey have already come to this country for a holiday before. As they were familiar with Turkey they took the decision to have their hair transplant here easily.

Some people are quite confused about hair transplantation. Different clinics give different prices and different graft counts. Such diverse information fuels the feeling of insecurity.

If you consider having your hair transplant in Turkey I would recommend you to have a 3-4 day holiday here and visit the clinics you are interested in to see everything with your own eyes. Turkey is a relatively close destination for patients from Europe. No matter where you are in Europe, a flight to Turkey will take maximum 3-4 hours.

Antalya, where our clinic is located, may be of a particular interest as it is one of the most popular tourism destinations in the world and has magnificent city beaches.

Our face-to-face interviews with the potential patients are very positive. It works like a charm to alleviate patients’ concerns.

Who shouldn’t have hair transplantation?

We do not recommend it to people who have health problems such as uncontrolled diabetes or high blood pressure. Besides, people with very limited donor areas should give up the idea of hair transplant as well.

If you have another health condition that requires regular medication, you should share this with your doctor before the hair transplantation.

As we have touched upon this issue I would like to make a reminder for all those who want to have a hair transplant surgery in Turkey.

If you are 20 years old and you have androgenic alopecia, you should not have your hair transplanted yet. Young people who have hair transplant in earlier age should bear in mind that they might need a second hair transplant. Some clinics in the market do not provide all the necessary information to their young patients. Since these people are young, hair loss continues after the hair was transplanted. So, even if the transplanted hair appears in bold areas, the shedding of the non-transplanted hair still goes on which eventually makes the appearance even worse.

Therefore, it is necessary to wait until at least 27-28 years of age to have your hair transplant. Young patients should be informed that their hair will continue shedding until that age even after the transplantation.

If the 2nd or 3rd transplant can be done why is it risky at a young age? As the patient is informed he/she takes over the financial responsibility.

The biggest risk here is the possible lack of the donor reserve required for the second hair transplantation. The hair behind the ears and at the nape is used as a donor area. Grafts are extracted from this region and planted in the open areas.

Grafts harvested from the donor area do not reappear. Therefore, if the donor area is not very dense, the hair there may look very sparse after the second hair transplant surgery which is very distressful for the patient.

Therefore, no matter how good the patient’s financial situation is, the second hair transplantation will not be possible since it may not have the required donor reserve for the second hair restoration surgery.

I would like to point out, however, that the donor areas of some people are so dense that even 3rd , 4th and even 5th hair transplant surgeries are possible.

Which hair transplantation technique gives better results? DHI or FUE or FUT?

We can see many advertisements telling us that one method is better than the others. I find this situation quite harmful. I know different doctors who perform successful hair restoration surgeries with FUE, DHI and FUT.

As FUT technique leaves a scar under the hair it is the least preferred method in our clinic.

DHI also known the Implanter Pen technique is actually the sub-technique of FUE. So DHI is also a FUE technique. There is a traditional FUE technique – the so-called channel technique. In our clinic we can apply both DHI and channel technique. But we prefer the DHI technique.

The thin tip of the pen used in DHI helps reduce the scalp traumas and shorten the recovery period as there is no channel opened. However, I would like to remind again that the traditional FUE technique also brings successful results.

Therefore, people who are choosing a clinic for hair transplantation should focus more on other criteria rather than the hair transplant technique.

Why are hair restoration prices so affordable in Turkey?

There are several reasons why hair transplant in Turkey is cheap.

First of all, there are hair restoration centers that call themselves “technician clinics” and perform 10 hair transplant operations per day without any doctor present during the surgery.  These centers usually do not perform all the necessary blood tests; have no medical doctor, and no hair transplantation license. As there is no medical doctor in the staff the cost is considerably reduced and they can operate at a very low price. We recommend that patients who communicate with such centers should be very careful.

The most important reason, however, is purchasing power parity.

That is the difference in purchasing power in different countries of the world. In Turkey, employee salaries, rents or other business expenses are considerably lower than in Europe or America. That is why not only hair restoration surgeries, but also many other medical operations are much more affordable in Turkey.

When will we invent a scientific technology that can completely prevent hair loss or regenerate the hair?

Nowadays, we have Minoxidyl and Propecia – scientifically proven drugs that prevent hair loss. Therefore, science can actually prevent or slow down hair loss to some extent. The problem here is the hair loss when you stop using these drugs.

Hair loss is not a condition that lasts a few months. Hair loss can begin from the early 20s and continue to the end of the 30s. In this case, a person should use these medications for 15-20 years, even for a lifetime, which is not recommended.

With treatments such as PRP and mesotherapy, it is possible to improve the hair quality, prevent hair loss or slow down its rate, but there is no treatment that prevents hair loss permanently.

The speculations about hair loss preventing drugs have been there since the 1980s. That’s why the global market of hair loss preventing products has reached a few billion dollar volume.

Research companies working in the field of hair loss are getting quite large investments. These companies focus on stem cell therapy and aim to eliminate hair loss permanently.

However, there is still no solution. It seems unlikely to be found in the near future.

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