“In medicine you cannot guarantee a result, you can expect some failures occasionally, but in hair transplantation this is at the very minimum,” Tastemel said.
“Anybody who does this in a decent clinic with a decent doctor, and a decent technique should expect 100% success.”
Tourists Are Getting Hair-Transplant Surgeries in Turkey Right Now
Forget Brazilian butt lifts, the newest hot thing in medical tourism? Hair transplants in Turkey—not only for the head, but for lush facial hair. (Not every fella has a natural Selleck ‘stash or Jon Hamm beard!) After getting a travel press release noting that 15,000 people travel to Turkey for hair transplantation, we did some digging on this trend to find out if undergoing cosmetic procedures abroad is safe.
The men who are getting these procedures done (and it is mostly dudes) aren’t American; they’re from countries like Italy, Greece, and recently, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, says Celik Nuri, a plastic surgeon and the International Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery’s national secretary for Turkey. Facial hair transplants are the most popular amongs Arab patients: “Over the last ten years, all of the male models in fashion magazines have become less feminized and have a ton of facial hair to be more masculine,” Nuri says. He personally is doing a lot more lipo-sculpting on Arab patients to mimic a muscular build. It’s all a part of an overall boom in plastic surgery in Istanbul.
Initially, it was all personal referrals: Turkish populations living in other countries would tell their friends about the relatively lower-cost high-quality medical care in Istanbul. But now companies in European countries organize medical tours to the city. Because of more-relaxed vacation policies, Arab and European patients typically plan to be in Istanbul for a week. They have surgery and then stay to enjoy the city and get any necessary immediate follow-ups. “You see a lot of men at historic sites around the city who clearly have just had hair-transplant surgery,” says Nuri.
In Istanbul, it’s common for foreign and local patients alike to use email and Whatsapp to make appointments and send photos of their progress to their doctors. “Almost 100 percent of my patients communicate with Whatsapp—it’s so visual,” says Nuri, a reconstructive specialist. “I ask for photos every week and then every month. My hair-transplant colleagues ask for weekly updates.” If a patient, once home, is unsatisfied, docs will tell them to hop on another plane to Istanbul or, if they’re having complications, refer them to a local physician who can attend to them immediately.