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4147 grafts FUE - Asmed Dr Erdogan

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So after 9 years of research the time has finally come. I returned last night (Friday July 28th 2017) from Turkey where Dr. Erdogan and his awesome team have transplanted 4147 grafts. Originally Dr. Erdogan estimated 4000 grafts but during procedure he said he felt that those extra 147 into hairline would be more appropriate. Also those 147 grafts were FREE of charge.

 

Summary

I began losing my hair when I was about 31-32. At first it wasn't as noticeable and I didn't really paid much attention. When I was about 35, I had to do what I call "Hair acrobatics" to comb and style it to hide my progressing baldness. At that time I also tried Finasteride but after about 3 months I got the side effects that every man is afraid of (lol) so I stopped.

 

My choice of a Surgeon

At first I started googling about hair transplant and saw old 80s and 90s plugs and it scared the hell out of me. I thought to myself, who in their right mind would want to have that doll hair. Then I found this site. The amount of information was overwhelming to say the least. I was so glad that I didn't stop my research. I've had consultations with some recommended doctors on this site about 8-9 years ago (FUT) but that dreaded scar was the only thing that was stopping me to pull the plug. Back then FUE was mostly for touch up procedures. I believe 1500 was the biggest I've seen and that was performed over 2 days. Over the years more and more new doctors were starting to post on HTN. Some of their FUE results not only looked on par with FUT but some looked far superior to FUT. I kept seeing Dr. Erdogan's results and I was always blown away. It went to the point where I would logon here, go to Patient and Doctors results and only looked for Dr. Erdogan's results. So I contacted his office first through their website and didn't receive a reply (they have a page where you can submit your pictures etc). So I wrote an email to their generic info@asmed.com.tr address. The next day I received a reply from Sevinc, a patient coordinator for Dr. Koray. We would then go back and forth for the next 2 weeks until the procedure was scheduled for July 26-27.

 

Pre Surgery

My patient coordinator was Sevinc (pronounced as Sevinch) and I can't say enough of good things about her. She was also with me for both days of my procedure. She sits next to me and tells me every next step that is taking place.

 

Arriving in Turkey

I left Phoenix AZ on July 23rd with only one stop in San Francisco I arrive in Istanbul on July 24th. Little scared and confused I walked out of airplane following the "Passport Control" sign. Took me about an hour to go thought the passport control but it was painless. After exiting the baggage claim area (I only had a carry on) I walked outside the doors where I see a big crowd. Many people are holding named signs I look for my name and after about 30 seconds I see a guy holding a sign with ASMED and my name under it. The guy (unfortunately I forgot his name) immediately recognized me because all ASMED drivers are given your picture before you arrive so they know what you look like. My driver then takes me to Radisson Blu hotel.

 

Radisson Blu Hotel

It’s a very nice and modern hotel. It has all amenities every nice hotel has. A restaurant downstairs where you get free breakfast every day. You can also eat dinner there (I did as did many other patients of ASMED that I’ve met on this journey). The only thing that was “foreign” to me was the fact that as you walk into your room, you place your room key card into a little slot by the door and it activates electricity, so the lights and AC wouldn’t work without the key. Apparently it’s very common in Europe but was a first for me.

 

July 25th, Consultation Day

The next day a different driver named Ahmed picked me up at about 1pm to take me to the clinic. As I sat in the mini VAN (every ASMED van has complimentary water and snacks available if you wish) I saw another guy entering the VAN, a guy from UK. We started talking on our way to the clinic. So from this day on we had dinners together at the restaurant at the hotel (we’ve met other people there who will dine with us later). As we arrive at the clinic, we are greeted by Sevinc. It was very nice to put a face to the name. We place one foot at a time into this little machine that envelopes your foot into plastic “shoe”. The clinic is state of the art. To be honest, it looks more like a spa. A pianist is playing in the lobby. We are then taken downstairs to take pictures where I also met my second patient coordinator Alesio. He also had a hair transplant with Dr. Koray and his pictures were posted on this site as well. His hair looked amazing. I would say even better in person than in pictures. This place has 50+ employees, all of them are good looking girls except Alesio, Dr. Koray and Dr. Umut (Anesthesiologist). I had a huge headache coming in, so I asked Sevinc if they can give me something for my headache. She smiled and said “I’ll be right back”. In about 2 min she comes back with Dr. Umut who then gives me a pain pill. We joked around (this guy has a very dry humor style, I loved it). Dr. Umut asked me about my health history (if I’m allergic to anything etc), all my answers were NO. He also asked me if I feel any anxiety, I told him NO, I told him I don’t need any Xanax, he smiled and said “Brave man” and started laughing. We are then taken to a washing room where I was shaved.

Few minutes later Sevinc takes me to Dr. Koray’s office. As I was walk in, Dr. Koray greets me with a big smile on his face and I said “Hey Doc”, finally I can put a face to your name. His office has a huge flat panel TV which shows your pictures previously taken by one of his girls. You can see how badly your hair is with great clarity. I didn’t really realize how bad it was until I saw myself on the big screen (I have taken pictures of myself for years but never saw it in such a bad light). We talked about my goals again even though I already explained them all in my correspondence in emails with Sevinc. Dr. Koray wanted to make sure we meet all my goals. He then draws a hairline that he thinks is more appropriate for my face shape. We tweak it and tweak it for the next few min until I was satisfied. He shakes my hand and I leave his office. I’m then taken to a room where another of his girls take my blood. I’m then taken to a washing room where I meet a guy from UK. He is also shaved and has his new hairline drawn. Another girl comes in with a small tray on which she carries hot tea and grilled cheese. After having tea with grilled cheese, we were told to be read tomorrow morning at 7:10 am, the driver will pick us up from the hotel. We say our goodbyes to Sevinc and the driver took us back to the hotel. We agreed with a “UK Guy” to meet downstairs at 7:30pm for dinner. The food was great.

 

July 26th, Surgery Day 1

After having breakfast at the hotel, Ahmed (the driver) took us back to the clinic. This time there were 3 of us in the van. We’ve met a very lovely girl from France. She has naturally a high hairline so she was here to get it lowered. She needed 1000 grafts. This is the only time we’ve seen her, I guess she left shortly after her procedure.

We are greeted at the clinic by Sevinc and proceed to get our “plastic shoes” on again. We are taken downstairs again where we change into scrubs-like clothes and then taken to the wash room where get shaved again. Right next door is the photo room, I proceed there where Dr. Koray finalizes my hairline (using a laser) and number of grafts per each zone. We are then taken to the operating section of the clinic. I meet my team of nurses. The room is cold but they give you a blanket. Sevinc is sitting next to me and says “They are going to administer anesthesia now”. I started remember reading about shots in the back of your head, that its like getting shots at the dentist. I gotta tell ya. Those shots hurt like a MOTHER…..I have a very high tolerance to pain but these shots hurt a lot. All I was thinking was, it’s only couple minutes, its only couple minutes. After about 2-3 min I was done with shots. Then the extractions began. I didn’t feel anything except one time I felt a pinch in one spot. I told Sevinc and they gave me another shot in that area immediately. This procedure was about 3-3.5 hours. I almost fell asleep but Sevinc woke me up because extractions are done with you sitting upright, so you better not move too much. After extractions were done, total count for the day was 2027, I was taken to the room where they brought us lunch. “UK Guy” wasn’t there because his procedure was still in place. He needed 3000 grafts in one day. So knowing that he needed 1000 extra grafts (comparing to my 2027) would place him probably for another hour behind me. I ate lunch. Dr Umut was there along with Sevinc. We joked around, talked about politics etc. After lunch Sevinc brought me back to the Operating Room again. 5 minutes later in walks Dr. Koray with a big smile on his face. I said “Hey Doc”, are you here to make me look even more beautiful than I already am? We laughed. Sevinc translated the joke to the rest of nurses who then broke into laughter. Incisions took about 45 minutes. At some point I fell asleep, Dr. Koray woke me up to tell me he’s all done with incisions and now I would be given more shots into recipient area. I thought to myself, those damn shots again. So same mental comfort: only couple minutes, only couple minutes. Nurses started implanting. I fell asleep for the most procedure. I was awaken by Sevinc to tell me I was all done for the day (around 4:45 pm). She brought a mirror where I saw my new hairline. It felt amazing to see what is to come when it all grows out. After that, they took me to the room where I changed into my clothes, then back to the washing room where a girl brought me another hot tea and a small pastry. Few minutes later Dr. Koray comes in to check on everything. Sevinc told me tomorrow will be the same schedule, we say our goodbyes and the driver takes me back to the hotel.

 

July 27th, Surgery Day 2

The second day went exactly the same way as the first one, only difference is that shots hurt more in the donor because the area was still sore. After I was done, I was told to be ready the next day at 9:20 am. We said our goodbyes and I was taken back to the hotel where I later met “UK Guy” and 2 others (2 guys from France) for dinner. After the dinner we said our goodbyes with the guys, friended each other Facebook so we can send each other pictures after our results come in.

 

July 28th, Wash Day and Departure back to US

I was picked up by Ahmed at 9:20 am and brought to the clinic where I was met by Sevinc. Went to the room where I was given a nice wash. I was then given all the post-op instructions and a flash drive with all my pictures, grafts counts and a video on how to wash your hair after post op. We chatted with Sevinc for a little bit and then I was taken to the airport by Ahmed. It took 4 security check points until I could get on the plane. Last security check point was right at the gate, where they even open your bags. I guess all flights back to US are rigorously checked. They check and double check everything with you. My flight was late by an hour and a half, I was afraid I would miss my second flight from Chicago to Phoenix. The flight from Istanbul to Chicago took 10 hours 30 min. I had less than one hour to get to another terminal at O’Hare to catch my second flight. I was so glad I had “Global Entry” setup couple months before. I saw the line where you had to go through (passport, custom forms etc), it look a line at Disney land. It took me exactly 2 minutes to go through customs with Global Entry. You scan your passport, the machine also takes fingerprints of your 4 fingers, spits out a receipt and you’re done. I was running to catch a little train that takes you to another terminal. I got there 3 minutes before my second flight was boarding. The next flight was only 3 hours, so I slept through it mostly and arrived home at around 10 pm.

 

Things to consider

Have buttoned shirts for operation days and the days after.

If traveling from US, get Global Entry setup before you go ($100 for 5 years)

Only have a carry on to prevent problems if you need to change planes etc

 

 

Graft Counts:

Total Available Donor: 8600

Total: 4147

Singles: 697

Doubles: 2262

Triple: 1030

Guadruples: 153

Quintuples: 5

Thickness: 68 microns

Hair Ratio: 2.16

 

 

P.S sorry for typos, grammatical errors (still jet lagged).

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Very nice. Should turn out well.

 

The key card for the electricity also was a first for me in the hotel.

 

Your first flight you went across the Pacific? Then second back through the Atlantic? You flew around the world literally lol

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Very nice. Should turn out well.

 

The key card for the electricity also was a first for me in the hotel.

 

Your first flight you went across the Pacific? Then second back through the Atlantic? You flew around the world literally lol

 

First flight: Phoenix > San Francisco > Istanbul (Pacific)

Flight back home: Istanbul > Chicago > Phoenix (Atlantic)

 

Yup, seems that way. Just like the book "Around the world in 6 days" lmao

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Thanks for sharing your experience! The work looks great! I'm sure you'll be extremely pleased. Please keep us updated on your progress.

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Thanks for sharing! I will have mine this December at Asmed! I'll be following your updates and I hope you could give me more tips. I've never been to Istanbul myself.

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Thanks for sharing, great read! I'm going to ASMED in November and love reading about everyone's experiences. I think I've read every Erdogan thread on this whole site haha. Looking forward to seeing your results.

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As you can see, the scabs formed, front of my head looks very crusty but that was to be expected. Hopefully scabs will be gone within a week. The donor looks awesome. I couldn't believe how good it looks after only 6 days. Pictures were taken with flash.

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That dark area is the scar on my head, it has a small cavity. It will come out within a week or so.

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That dark area is the scar on my head, it has a small cavity. It will come out within a week or so.

 

Are you sure it is just that? Did you ask the clinic? Do not want to scare you, but could be negrosis.

 

It was there from the begin with, so hard to tell. Rest Looks clean an nice. Good luck.

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Ya, this is honestly very worrying to me. Scalp looked fine before surgery, and in the post-op photos you can notice areas that turned dark blue, the largest of which is where the dark area in the scabbing photos is. I would definitely email the clinic about this to see what they say.

 

Like Gasthoerer said, definitely don't want to worry you unnecessarily, but I haven't seen many scabbing photos with areas that looked like that. And as someone who is booked with ASMED myself, it's concerning.

Edited by HairInspector

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Hairdew,

All politics and rhetoric aside I advise you in the STRONGEST terms to visit a local physician immediately as you may well be dealing with necrosis for which treatment with antibiotics and possibly professional wound care may be called for. I also read that you have not contacted your doctor's office as yet, I would recommend you do so immediately.

 

Dr. Feller

Great Neck, NY

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Thank you Dr. Feller. I have contacted the clinic and will see a local physician.

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Please keep us updated on your situation HairDew, I'm hoping that Dr. Erdogan and the clinic are very responsive and helpful to you. I know you've been around here for a while and have been planning a hair transplant for many years (much like myself) so I'm wishing you all the best and hope everything works out well for you.

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Best of luck that everything is ok for you HairDew. I echo the post of HairInspector that the response of Asmed will be very important to those of us who are booked in for future treatment. I am also scheduled for surgery there soon. I'm sure there will be others who would be extremely grateful if you could keep us informed on your progress.

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Like some above I'm due to have procedure at Asmed next month so would be interested in hearing their response and what your doctor says this is. Do you have any update? Best of luck.

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@HairDew, I know you may be in a difficult place right now and I'm really hoping that you're OK. Would really appreciate an update from you on how you're doing.

 

As I'm sure you know, many future ASMED patients are watching this thread and hoping that the clinic responded to you promptly and professionally. I'd be greatly disappointed if this was not the case, and it would cause me to seriously reconsider my upcoming procedure there.

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Just wanted to update everyone. I've been in constant contact with ASMED. Yes a small part on my head where I have a scar developed necrosis. This is second case of necrosis in ASMED's practice. I've been on antibiotics for 7 days, the wound is healing and is actually a lot smaller than it initially was.

 

The reason for necrosis: I had a scar on my head. There could have been not enough blood circulation there. Plus I smoked a pack a day, that didn't help either (it could have been the biggest factor). So for all you smokers out there, quit at least 6-12 months before your procedure. I have been smoke free for the past 3 weeks.

 

Dr. Erdogan stands behind his work and once the necrosis heals, he will provide a touch up procedure free of charge, including a flight ticket. I will keep you updated.

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Thank you for the update HairDew! So happy to hear that ASMED has been good about staying in touch with you, makes me a lot more confident about going there for my procedure (I have a little anxiety about traveling from NYC to Turkey for the operation). Cases of necrosis happen with even the best doctors, but the important thing is that they do the right thing by staying communicative and doing what they can to make it right. Sounds like Dr. Erdogan is handling this perfectly, especially considering he offered a touch-up for free.

 

Hang in there and best of luck to you!

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Thanks HairInspector.

 

I would advise you to get Global Entry ($100 for 5 years). NYC have direct flights to Istanbul, so the flight for you should be a straight shot. Global Entry would allow you to go through US customs (on the way back) in about 2 minutes.

 

Coming back from IST to NYC, you will go through at least 3-4 security check points in Instanbul. The last security check point was right at the gate, where they even opened our bags.

Edited by HairDew

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