Koray Erdogan 5k Grafts: Results & Experience

codswallop

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I just finished surgery with Erdogan a few days ago (finished on 21st) so not much to show at the moment, but I'll post here to update at regular intervals. :) I'll give some info about the procedure and what to expect, as well as try to give some advice.

I was NW3 with diffuse thinning and prior to surgery had been using Propecia for 3 yrs, Kirkland 5% liquid minoxidil 5 yrs, Nizoral 2% for 1 yr.

Graft stats:

Total grafts: 5024
hair/graft ratio: 2.13
Total donor capacity: 8400

Cost:
12,500 euro's which included 5 nights accomodation at clinic, taxi to/from airport, take-home treatment kits and full catering.

Before:
before-hairline.JPG
_DSC9874.JPG _1.JPG _DSC9872.JPG _DSC0008.JPG _DSC0017.JPG


After:

hairline.JPG _DSC0504.JPG _DSC0512.JPG

Experience:
Day 1:

As soon as I arrived at the airport, one of the clinics 3 drivers was waiting for me. When I arrived at the clinic I had to stick my shoes in this machine which wraps them in plastic film. So first impressions were they are serious with hygiene. I had my heart rate checked and had a blood test, and then had an initial consultation with Erdogan. Then I had my head shaved and saw Erdogan again who did what I thought was a very thorough hairline design with his business partner giving her opinion, and drew a load of blue lines on my head (see pics above).

Day 2: Hairline
They expect you to be at the clinic early (~7:30am). I stayed at the clinic so I just had to go in the lift... but if you are staying at the hotel, one of their drivers will bring you to the clinic (2-3 minute drive away). The day starts with breakfast in the clinics canteen with the other patients, while everyone waits for their call to surgery with a typical 8am start and 5-6pm finish. First were the extractions which were carried out by technicians. This was the worse part. It's the most painful and you have to sit in the same upright position for 5 hours. Then it was lunch, followed by incisions, which is more comfortable than extraction since you can lie down... and its generally less painful. Erdogan himself does the incisions, which only takes about half an hour (for ~2.5k). Then it's the implantation phase which takes about 3-4 hours, again carried out by a team of technicians and you can lie down again. After that, you are taken to the salon room and sit under this weird pleasantly warm laser thing for a while which is supposed to help heal the wounds quicker. At this point you are usually in the salon with all other people who were in surgery that day, and then Erdogan comes and checks everyone over.

Day 3: Scalp and vertex
Same as day 2 but different area

Day 4:
First wash, final check by Erdogan and photo's.

The team of technicians who I had consisted of 4 people; 2 who were working directly on my scalp, and 2 working with the grafts. Then there's another member of staff who is there with you most of the time (who speaks your language) incase you need anything, e.g. ipad for movies, drinks, snacks. The anaesthetist also makes round visits to each surgery room ( I think there's 4 in total) to check on your pain levels and if you need any medication (oral or intravenous) in addition to the local anaesthetic. Sometimes Erdogan's business partner came to visit too to check on the surgery, and even did some of the extractions and implantations on day 2. They do a very good job on making you comfortable during surgery. Again, they are very serious with hygiene, with all surgery rooms being 2 floors underground, behind a sterile zone.

The surgery was more painful and taxing on the body than I thought it would be. I had numerous strong painkillers and lots of local anasthetic. I had a painful burning sensation which was particularly bad on the 2nd day during extraction. There was no point during the surgery where pain was severe, but when moderate pain carries on for 2 hours straight, it gets to you. But note that the other people at the clinic I met seemed to think it was painless, with one even sleeping through part of it, so maybe I'm just a little resistant to local anasthetic.

The following ~2 days after surgery I felt ill (weak, exhausted, in pain), and had some pretty bad facial swelling but on the 3rd day I was mostly back to normal apart from pain in the donor area which I have to take ibuprofen for every night else it hurts too much to rest my head on my pillow. Anasthetic cream helps a little during the day, but it's quite painful still.
 
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damo666

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Nice review I was thinking about going with Dr Erdogan in March next year.

The thing I'm worried about is the plane journey back could you cover up your head as its pretty embarrassing. Also had did you feel as I would be flying back the day after surgery......
 

razzmatazz91

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I kne that it's not the doctors themselves but the technicians who do the implantation into incisions. It's the incisions that are made by the doctor himself.

But the extractions too done by technicians? Is this common?
 

codswallop

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The thing I'm worried about is the plane journey back could you cover up your head as its pretty embarrassing. Also had did you feel as I would be flying back the day after surgery......

Hair transplants are very common in Turkey... There were 2 other men on the plane on the way back who had also had a hair transplant. The embarassing part for me was the train back to my house. But it's just one train journey of people looking at you funny, and a lifetime of hair... You can't let silly things like that stop you from getting a transplant.

But the extractions too done by technicians? Is this common?

It doesn't suprise me. Extractions and implantation is just the same thing over and over again. These technicians will have already done hundreds of thousands of them already and it's mostly the same from one person to the next. The hairline design, and incisions are different for every person though and requires more expertise, so it makes sense that's the only part done by Erdogan.
 
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codswallop

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How much money did you spend in total?
it's 2.5 euro's per graft so 12.5k euro, inclusive of all catering, accomodation, taxi to/from airport, accomodation and clinic, and treatment kits you take home. Flights on top of that would bring the total to about 12.7k. If you stay at the clinic you don't need to spend a penny more since they get you take outs for dinner (for free), but if you stay at the nearby hotel you will need to get dinner yourself.
 
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michel sapin

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i will follow your story man !
SO your regimen helped to maintain your hair ?
since you have started propecia you have lost some hair ?
 

razzmatazz91

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I'm following your story too.

Have to ask this too..... The doctor has written the density on your head with blue markers. Is this the native density? Surely no one can do over 100 grafts per cm2. Also, though you say you're an NW3, it seems that your hairloss was far more advanced than just that.

Also, how come you didn't need lesser implatation in your frontal forelock, which already had some hair there.
 

codswallop

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SO your regimen helped to maintain your hair ?
since you have started propecia you have lost some hair ?

Yes the regimen helped maintain my hair, and actually grew some back when I started finasteride. I'm a very good responder to finasteride. As for minoxidil I hate it for masking the problem for years while it was actually getting significantly worse behind all the fake minoxidil hairs.

Have to ask this too..... The doctor has written the density on your head with blue markers. Is this the native density? Surely no one can do over 100 grafts per cm2. Also, though you say you're an NW3, it seems that your hairloss was far more advanced than just that.

Also, how come you didn't need lesser implatation in your frontal forelock, which already had some hair there.
I'm not completely sure what the cm^2 numbers are. Maybe they are supposed to be the desired density? You really need to see my head from the side to realise that I am actually NW3, I will find some side pics to add to the OP. I agree in those photo's it looks a little worse though.
As for the frontal forelock... It does look just as scabby as the areas that had no hair before, but its too hard to tell the density of either at the moment. I'll post a close up photo after the scabs have fallen off.
 
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codswallop

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These were taken on day 15 in the small time window after the scabs had all gone, but before major shedding took hold, although I estimate 100-200 hairs fell out with the scabs, especially around/near the crown (I couldn't help myself but to pick at some of the scabs day 11+ ._. ).

IMG_20171206_105222065.jpg IMG_20171206_105201219.jpg cropped_day_15_1.jpg

Currently on day 23, and have had heavy shedding since those pics, the hairline is quickly returning back to what it was pre-op with thinning returning to top. I had only very faint redness on day 15 but it has got worse since then too. I will update when all the implanted hairs have been shed. Although it'll probably look worse than pre-op due to quitting minoxidil 3 weeks before the op. I'm a very good responder to minoxidil so I'm expecting some pretty big shedding of native hair in the coming months, in addition to the implanted hairs :(
 
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codswallop

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Day 52 IMG_20180112_210821169.jpg

It's exactly what i expected it to be at this point given i quit minoxidil nearly 3 months ago... i.e. worse than pre-transplant. I am still getting itching. One interesting thing is I haven't had a single headache since the transplant which is very unusual for me, they used to come every other day for at least 3 yrs prior to the transplant so its interesting that they've stopped completely right after the surgery. I'm hoping it stays this way :rolleyes:
 
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Eren

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Wonder if you'll have shock loss in the diffused area. In your case the trade-off of having new hair is definitely worth it I think.
 

codswallop

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3 months
IMG_20180223_175554139.jpg IMG_20180223_175618383.jpg IMG_20180223_175634059.jpg

4 months 1 week
IMG_20180331_185124657.jpg IMG_20180331_185134874.jpg IMG_20180331_185217464.jpg IMG_20180331_185348558.jpg

Left temple is doing significantly better than right temple. Virtually all hairs fell out from right temple before regrowth started, but 10%+ of left temple survived. No idea how hair follicles are supposed to survive such an ordeal without shedding... they are quite tough! :eek:

Front & temples are great, but I'd like to see more thickening on top, I'm a little disappointed with that at the moment, there's still no discernible difference from pre-op, but that could easily be from quitting minoxidil for a while. It's hard to know if my minoxidil hairs are still shedding, or growing back yet 2 months after restarting it.

I'll be getting a haircut for the 6 month pics, and i'll take a photo of the donor area too (hair too long there currently)
 
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codswallop

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OP is your age accurate? 26? It looks like you’re suffering from a considerable amount of shock loss. I’m sure it will return, hair transplant looks like top notch work.

I quit minoxidil for 4 months so I lost all my minoxidil hairs, and I am a very good responder to it. A similar thing happened before when I quit it for 5 months, so combine it with shock loss from a hair transplant, I'm not suprised the 1.5 - 3 month pics look so bad. Also yes I'm 26... 27 in a month. I have a few pics of the 5 month period i quit a few years ago, I'll post them for a comparison once i can be bothered
 
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codswallop

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Why'd you stop using minoxidil?
It was for the surgery, surgeons ask you to stop using it between 2-4 weeks prior to surgery, I stopped it 3 weeks before. They also advice not to use it for about a month after too, but my scalp was really itchy and irritable for abour 2 months after so I stopped using it for longer, along with Nizoral... I just didn't want to irritate my scalp any further
 

genetically_cursed

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damn, man, apparently im new to this, but your pre-op pics and initial hair state didnt look like it required such staggering amount of folliciles as 5k. it looks like 3k would be more than enough, not sure where they all have gone to. ur initial norwood looks veritually identical to Luca's and he had only 3k done.

also is it shock loss happening on second third of the crown closer to vertex?

did u try to calculate costs of living in a hoteal seprately from clinic and grabbing lunch there? id think it must less expensive than their care package, could be wrong tho.

did u get to chat with other fellas in that after surgery room? :p

thanks for updates anyway, all this info is useful for future hair transplant havers.
 

Murkey Thumb

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That is looking really good after 4 months. I am sure you will have a full head of hair by the 6 month mark.
 

Chriswaun

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Hello,

How old are you and how long did it take for your hair to reach current situation (before surgery)

Looks like a similar pattern to mine , how many grafts do you guys thing I will need ? See photo . He redness is due to sunburn. Was nice weather in England today for a change.
 

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Murkey Thumb

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Hello,

How old are you and how long did it take for your hair to reach current situation (before surgery)

Looks like a similar pattern to mine , how many grafts do you guys thing I will need ? See photo . He redness is due to sunburn. Was nice weather in England today for a change.
Erm, if you have a similar pattern then you will need as many as Codswallop.
 
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