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ersko72

Dr Koray Erdogan, Asmed Clinic – 3400 grafts – FUE -Dec 2015

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Hi Everyone,

 

On 8 December 2015 I had 3400 FUE at Asmed Clinic in Istanbul, Turkey. Here’s my review.

 

About me

 

I’m from Australia and 43 years old.

 

My temples and hairline began to recede in my twenties. I was self-conscious, and downright frightened of how it would progress.

 

By the age of 26 (back in 1998) I had my first prescription for Propecia (Finasteride). I’ve had zero side effects and have stuck with Finasteride for the past 17 years. My hair loss slowed remarkably, but did not completely halt.

 

My donor hair is fine (40 microns, it turns out), however is reasonably dense all over.

 

My research

 

I was looking for a doctor with proven results in densely packed hairline restoration. Had I been approaching my first HT earlier in life, a conservative approach might have factored more into my decision. But I’m in my forties, have 17 years of prevention under my belt, and I’ve managed to hold it at NW2. I wanted a FUE doc who had the best chance of constructing a believable restored hairline.

 

I scoured this forum before moving to a shortlist for online consultations. Before locking in Asmed, I private messages 10 past patients. I mostly reached out to forum members who has posted their original results then gone quiet, and to my surprise I heard back from all but one. Of the 9 that responded, eight were pleased with their final results, and one was openly disappointed. Despite the single negative response I remained comfortable, paid a deposit, planned a holiday around the procedure and booked flights.

 

 

My consultation

 

Nothing out of the ordinary. Photos, blood work, met Erdogan, he measured caliber of hairline and density, discussed expectations, drew a great hairline that was easily agreed, final number of grafts locked in, and head shaved (gulp!).

 

Having my hair caliber confirmed as 40 microns was a bummer, but hardly a surprise.

 

I made the final decision to proceed with the surgery the following day, and paid Euros cash. Note: Asmed requires cash payment to avoid paying a 20% tax. This means that to proceed at the 2.5 Euros per graft quoted you need to acquire a massive amount of foreign currency before you leave home, and then travel with it. This is a major hassle/worry, and I was relieved to finally hand it over.

 

Surgery day

 

Again, nothing out of the ordinary.

 

Erdogan’s first assistant Dilek was assigned to my surgery. I’d seen her name numerous times on the forums, and was comforted knowing she had many years of experience. There was also another tech involved, however Dilek spent the most time worklng on me. I estimate she performed 80% of the extractions, and over half of the implantations.

 

There were 3 surgeries happening at Asmed the same day as me, and 4 the following day. Anyone considering Asmed should go in with the understanding Erdogan’s involvement will be limited to the hairline design and incisions. I knew this going in, and was fine with it, however it could be a surprise to others.

 

One thing I do distinctly recall was the impact of the medications. The anesthesiologist offered me a Xanax in the morning to calm my nerves, then a Tramadol at lunch for the pain. Well, what a combination. After lunch I was drifting in and out of vivid dream scenarios and calmly waking up in the middle of my HT. That happened on repeat for hours. I spoke to other patients and none of them had the same trance-like experience – so it must have just been the medication’s impact on me. I was in surgery until almost 8pm and was too swept away in the various dreams to be bored…so I was more than okay with it.

 

I had the optional PRP, and I really hope it does something hurry along his dreadful redness.

 

My stats

 

• Total grafts – 3404 (3200 was originally planned, and was only charged for this)

- 420 singles

- 1790 doubles

- 1134 triples

- 60 quadruples

• Average hair per graft – 2.24 (7643 hairs)

• Caliber: 40 microns

• Donor capacity: 8500

 

My tips

 

Try to connect with other patients.

 

Do your best to find out if any other forum members will be at the same doctor/clinic the same week as you. Before leaving, I connected with another Australian who had surgery booked the day before mine, and he had connected with another forum member booked for surgery the same day as me. By the end of it there were a few us catching up at the Radisson, and we’re now connected on Facebook swapping recovery stories. Hair transplants are a major life experience, and connecting with real people who have chosen the same path, going through the exact same thing, at the same time, has been an unexpected surprise and comfort.

 

Don’t rush back home

I went over with partner by my side, and we travelled for 2 weeks following the op. It was great to be able to walk around overseas not caring what strangers thought of my bald, massacred, head. I’m back home now, and to keep the procedure quiet I’m having have to carefully manage any social appearances…I wish we had stayed away longer.

 

Results

 

It’s way too early to tell. I’ll take pics every month to track my own progress, and will be happy to share them. Fingers crossed, I’ll have good news to report in around 6 months. Either way, I'll return the favour and report back honestly with success or regrets.

 

Ersko72

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That hairline is going to be absolutely killer, especially with so many grafts densly packed into such a small area. Looks like you also have plenty of donor supply in the bank. Looking forward to seeing how this progresses. How long did Erdogan spend on the incisions?

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I'm was just slipping into my trance as the incisions were made, so my recollection is hazy - but I'm guessing incisions took over an hour. Erdogan is a nice guy - quirky but friendly!

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Work looks immaculate and I bet with such a great starting point you can probably look forward to a stellar result! Also, encouraging to hear from someone who has lost relatively little ground while using fin over an extended period.

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Hey man!

 

Im happy for you that you finally had your procedure done! :)

Great christmas present, isnt it? (;

 

40microns is very fine man :) But Dr.Koray is experienced with such fine hair. My 50microns are also fine.

 

But that amount of grafts should give you a veeeeeeery good result (if all grow)

 

Im now 4 months post op and on the corner to the fun time :).

The last months were slow. Extremely slow!

Month 3-4 was the hardest part by now and i think it is for everyone.

So i better tell this to you right now.

Try working out or start anything that makes you happy and get you away from your biggest enemy for the next 3-4 months. The mirror.. :P

But hey, hopefully after 6 months hes your best friend. So dont be rude to him :P

 

I wish you all the best!

Whenever you need some motivation, go online we will help you buddy!

And enjoy the first month, the "honeymoon" month :P

As soon as the hair shed and most of them will shed the lovely waiting game starts ;P

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Excellent work here. Really nicely done ! Hairline in particular.

Your going to have a fantastic result I have no doubt!!!

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Hey Erkso

 

Looks like he has done a excellent job. Yours should turn out really thick as they are so tightly packed. I guess he could pack more into such a small area (50cm2)because of the 40 micron size. Compared to mine you have had more grafts in almost half the area!

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Looks great and very clean.

 

I know you've given your reasons and I'm currently doing my own research and looking into Turkey - what was your over riding reason to go with Erdogan as opposed to the numerous other clinics in Turkey, considering that the doctor doesn't perform much of the work himself?

 

From what I understand he is also one of the most expensive in Turkey, though still cheap in exchange rate terms if you are from UK, USA, Aus, etc.

 

You also said you would have preferred to stay in Turkey longer - how much longer would you advise, weighing in the cost of hotels, food, etc. because 2 weeks seems ideal. Thanks and hope you have a brilliant outcome.

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Thanks everyone for the comments.

 

@Raman - yes, it seems I had almost the same grafts for half the area. Probably two reasons:

- at 40 microns I'd need 1.5 for every one of your 60 micron grafts to achieve a similar density.

- you had grafts placed add density well beyond your hairline. I'm guessing grafts were spaced further apart where you had existing hair to mix with. While fine, my hair oddly hits full density immediately behind the hairline..so grafts were only placed 1cm or so behind to give me a buffer on future loss.

 

@Vpac - price wasn't a big consideration in choosing Erdogan. I was happy to go anywhere, Turkey or otherwise. Regardless that Erdogan is quite removed from much of the procedure, Asmed had the best examples of FUE dense packed NW2s.

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My shedding has been steady for the past 2 weeks, and I estimate I've shed 60% of my grafts so far. It hasn't eased up yet, so I'm expecting a full shed by the end of it.

 

Going into the HT, I had imagined shedding faster and being able to conceal the redness with make-up or something for my return to work..no such luck. I'm in limbo with too many remaining grafts to disguise the red. I've been back at work for a week already and the sunburn story is wearing thin. Any tips on how to handle the situation most appreciated!

 

Things seem to be tracking as they should. The only thing I'm a bit bothered by is some grafts growing slower than others; some finer hairs have grown so slowly they are not much more than stubble.

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You look to be right on track! When did all your scabs come off? Tomorrow is day 10 for me and I have a whole bunch still left. I know ASMED said they should be off by day 10 with their recommended wash schedule....well, that hasn't worked for me. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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My shedding has been steady for the past 2 weeks, and I estimate I've shed 60% of my grafts so far. It hasn't eased up yet, so I'm expecting a full shed by the end of it.

 

Going into the HT, I had imagined shedding faster and being able to conceal the redness with make-up or something for my return to work..no such luck. I'm in limbo with too many remaining grafts to disguise the red. I've been back at work for a week already and the sunburn story is wearing thin. Any tips on how to handle the situation most appreciated!

 

Things seem to be tracking as they should. The only thing I'm a bit bothered by is some grafts growing slower than others; some finer hairs have grown so slowly they are not much more than stubble.

 

Make a pre-emtive strike. In a week tell your colleagues that you are starting to get worried that the sunburn isn't going away. Even ask them for advice. Tell them if it doesn't get better you will go see a doctor. Then you can play the dumb card. Maybe after a few weeks you cam tell them you went to see a doctor and he said that he prescribed you a creame or something like that. Use your imagination.

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Hey Erkso, as you know I'm around 2 weeks ahead of you I have still got a little redness. My shedding started on the 17th dec and stopped falling out around a week ago. I still have some stubble and it looks a lot more sparse than yours. I'm just telling everyone I've been sun burnt and it seems to be taking a long time to heal. If anyone asks why is it taking so long to heal I just say I'm going to a skin specialist to get it sorted not sure and act dumb like the Stig said haha.

 

That being said I have noticed the redness drop off quite a bit in the last 2 weeks so with any luck you will have the same, all the best mate.

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@templeloss, I wasn't done at 10 days either, On Day 10 I applied a bit more pressure any my first 10 grafts shed. That put me off so I waited to Day 12 and soaked my head throughly before gently tacking all remaining scales with my fingernails. It took about an hour, but went well and I was scab free at the end of it.

 

@Stig, thanks for the suggestion - I'll run with it!

 

@Raman - It sounds like I am in progressing identically to you, with a 2 week lag. I hope I'm also lucky enough to have some stubble make it through the next week or two, it would be a massive boost to have some early confirmed survivors! It's great to hear from another Sydneysider on here - small world!

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hey erkso,

 

only just come across your post as its in a different section of the forum to mine, it was my 3 month mark yesterday and im very pleased so far, your work looks very clean and to a high standard you should have a great result even with 40 microns

 

good luck growing mate cant wait to see your results now

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Thanks for the comment HT-FUE. I'm going well, My shed has progressed very slow compared to yours. I'm almost 6 weeks and the last 25-30% of my grafts are still hanging on. The rate of shed has slowed, but not stopped. I expect the majority of stragglers to vacate by week 8. My redness has been awful, but I've been using excuses and hats to live life normally.

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your redness doesnt look half as bad as mine yours looks slightly pink mine was that red it was glowing in the dark haha. good to hear you havent shed as much as i did, i think youre going to have a very good result here

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The bad news: I'm still noticeably red. The good news: 15-20% of the grafts have hung on and I've experienced zero shock-loss of my native hair.

 

I'm hopeful the red will have faded enough by my month 3 checkpoint that I can resume social activities without a cap. Overall, I'm feeling positive that some grafts survived the shed and the end of the duck phase is finally in sight.

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Looking great erkso for only 2 months too. Very nice to see you have a lot of hairs that have hung on and not shed you've more transplanted hairs not shed than me. I'm just over 3 month and my head has really started to fill out so the good news for you is it should look better than mine so fingers crossed for that and in just over a month your hair should be in great shape

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Thanks for the comment HT-FUE. I'm going well, My shed has progressed very slow compared to yours. I'm almost 6 weeks and the last 25-30% of my grafts are still hanging on. The rate of shed has slowed, but not stopped. I expect the majority of stragglers to vacate by week 8. My redness has been awful, but I've been using excuses and hats to live life normally.

 

whenever i hear doctors say you can be back in work in 2 weeks with no evidence= BS

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The bad news: I'm still noticeably red. The good news: 15-20% of the grafts have hung on and I've experienced zero shock-loss of my native hair.

 

I'm hopeful the red will have faded enough by my month 3 checkpoint that I can resume social activities without a cap. Overall, I'm feeling positive that some grafts survived the shed and the end of the duck phase is finally in sight.

 

are you cutting your hair?

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Hi mosd,

 

I agree, for caucasians '2 weeks and you'll be presentable' is plain ridiculous. 2 months would be a better guide, and even then you'd be pushing it. I'll need until to month 3 at least. That said, I'm glad I didn't know in advance how long the red would last or I would never have gone through with it.

 

I've now cut my hair- buzzed number 5 on top and number 2 back and sides. It looks better a bit shorter and I'll keep it this length (or shorter) until I have enough grafts regrown for a regular haircut.

 

Ersko

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I have lots of hair sprouting & hope I'm right on track for where I should be at 3 months. One temple is still weak compared to the rest. Other than that I have a very light, even coverage over my previously receded hairline. The redness only recently faded away.

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