REPORT: Dr. Ali Emre Karadeniz, AEK, Istanbul, Turkey - FUE - Jan 2019 - BaldTruthTalk.com
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  1. #1
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    Default REPORT: Dr. Ali Emre Karadeniz, AEK, Istanbul, Turkey - FUE - Jan 2019

    NOTE 1: I am waiting on proper before / after pictures from Dr. K, I will publish them once I receive. I have uploaded some (terrible) post-op / Day 1 selfies

    NOTE 2: This could be a long report, so I am starting with the conclusion.

    NOTE 3: This report was written on Day 1 (day after procedure), while I’m sitting in my hotel room. This is a report on my experience of the actual procedure, rather than success rate. I will update the thread with a new picture every month until month 12.

    NOTE 4: This is not designed to be an in-depth report on FUE (You can Google that). This is a report on my own personal experience at AEK, Istanbul. Hopefully it may help a person decide on whether or not to choose AEK for their procedure. I note that reviews online of AEK are scarce as they do not pay people to write 5* reviews (yes, that’s a thing… worldwide in every industry)


    CONCLUSION
    Date: Jan 2019

    Clinic: Dr Ali Emre Karadeniz, AEK, Istanbul Turkey

    Airport pick-up / drop-off: YES (Enterprise Mercedes Benz Vito)

    Hotel: Silence Hotel, Istanbul (5 min walk from clinic) - http://www.silenceistanbul.com/en

    Am I happy I chose Dr Ali Emre Karadeniz / AEK? YES

    Would I recommend Dr Ali Emre Karadeniz / AEK? YES

    Did it feel like a factory / mill operation? Absolutely NO

    Did it feel like a boutique / personalised clinic: Absolutely YES!

    Any complaints post-op? NO

    Procedure: FUE

    Was it painful? No

    Was it uncomfortable? Absolutely YES

    Time taken: Started consultation approx. 9:30am, left the clinic approx.. 5pm

    Did you sleep post-op? Yes, lay at approx. 60-degree angle using 2 pillows and a towel rolled up around my neck (like a travel pillow)

    Does it hurt Day 1? Not at all, but it’s sensitive

    Any swelling? I am wearing the head-band. Above the head-band there is swollen, but nothing below (I’m going to wear this religiously for the next few days!)

    Do I have any criticisms / things I would change? I would not change anything. One slight thing that bugged me was that the technicians phone was left on a table and kept vibrating, but they didn’t use their phones so it’s not a complaint. The technicians were talking among themselves during the procedure. I did not have any issue with this… I would prefer them to be comfortable in their surroundings while working on my head. While their English was not excellent, they were light-hearted ladies whom I was able to crack a little joke with and at one point we were all singing to the radio! If I have to be critical, I would say the lunch could have been more exciting (Well, I had to find something wrong, didn’t I?!)

    Grafts: 5035 HAIRS (no mention of grafts)

    Cost: This is a bit long-winded…. Initially was quoted €1,500 but was advised that this would be a technician job. The other option was €3,000, where Dr. K would perform the incisions. The incisions only took approx. 30 mins… an easy way to make €1,500. Was it worth the extra €1,500? I cannot tell, as I have nothing to compare it to. However, was the whole procedure worth €3,000? ABSOLUTELY! I still feel I got a good deal, as I favour boutique / personalised service over a cheap price.


    HISTORY
    32 yo / male NW5… typical receding hairline, hair going up vertical at the temples. Obvious thinning on top of head / crown.


    RESEARCH
    The notion of a HT began back in July 2018. At that, it was just a notion. After some research, Turkey seemed to be the place to go (I’m from Ireland, so not a big issue to fly).
    The issue began upon research; with so much choice, where do I go? One thing was for sure, I needed to find a Dr. clinic that offers boutique service, rather than a mill (Given that we’re talking about Turkey, budget was not an issue)

    To cut a long story short, I stumbled across Dr Ali Emre Karadeniz / AEK, Istanbul from ORGANIC searching (no referrals etc.)


    THE JOURNEY WITH AEK
    It all began with a generic e-mail to AEK with the usual questions. A reply was received in good time from Mr. Yuksel. He answered all my questions in a non-scripted way, so we were off to a good start. Fast forward 3-4 weeks, and I decide that AEK is the one for me (Thanks, Yuksel). DISCLAIMER: I had been in contact with no less than 10 clinics, but something just seemed right about AEK (go with your gut!). Once I had the deposit paid (the only place I made contact with who required a deposit… everything was fine, did a EURO BANK TRANSFER), in came a lady by the name of Gokce. If Yuksel is Reception / Front of House, Gokce is concierge.

    Gokce handled everything once the booking was made regarding hotel queries / airport pickup etc. She also met me the morning of the procedure at the hotel, walked me to the clinic (5 min walk from hotel) and was generally a shoulder to lean on should I have any concerns (Thank you, Gokce!)

    Once I arrived at the clinic (in an office block with nice views), I knew I was in good hands. In-fact, I never had any concerns at all thanks to Yuksel and Gokce due to their excellent communication in the weeks preceding the procedure.
    The clinic is spotlessly clean. THIS IS NOT A FACTORY / MILL OPERATION. On my arrival, there was another guy from Denmark who came to have his bandages removed. He was gone within 20 mins. The only other patient who was at the clinic on the day was my friend, who came with me, who also chose an FUE! (He was in for consultation).


    PROCEDURE
    Consult with Dr. K – This was my first time meeting him. This guy is a no b*llsh*t talker…. He gets to the point. He doesn’t promise you the world; he provides you with facts. Instantly, I liked this guy! We discussed my goals etc… - Naturally I have always had a high hairline, so let’s not try to polish a turd. I told him that I want a conservative hairline, with emphasis on the top of the head / crown. In his own words, the crown is a ‘black hole’ – you can feed it hair all day and it will want more. So, I took his word for it and we went ahead. I could see relief in his face when I mentioned a conservative hairline. He mentioned that he will do whatever the patient wants, but unfortunately some patients think that the doctor can perform a miracle and they want the hairline lowered too much. We didn’t need to talk for long as we were both in total agreement once he drew the recommended hairline.

    STEP 1: I was taken into the next room, where I lay face-down. Anesthetic administrated (technician). This was the most painful part of the procedure, which involved sharp pains when the needle was inserted. I can say that from here on in, there was no pain at all

    STEP 2: Extraction (technicians). You could hear the machine and feel it against the scalp, but zero pain (I actually fell asleep at one point during this step)

    STEP 3: Dr. K performs incisions

    STEP 4: Technicians (2) perform insertion of grafts.

    At this point, you’re probably thinking “Hey, you said you wanted a Dr. clinic, this sounds like a technician job”. In truth, yes, the technicians do the majority of the work. BUT, Dr. K (and Gokce) were coming in regularly to check everything was OK. Also, I mention again, I was the only other person in the clinic that day… I was still delighted with my choice.
    It’s at this point I must compliment the technicians. They are good at what they do. I was comfortable with them working on me.


    DAY 1 FOLLOW-UP: BANDAGE REMOVAL
    Not a whole lot to say here… I sent a Whatsapp to Gokce and asked if I could call round for the bandage removal. I arrive, one of the ladies removed the bandage and washed my head. I spent approx. 15 mins talking to Dr. K (Yuksel & Gokce were also there) with some questions. I then left, with a big smile on my face!

    I would like to make note that this clinic feels like a family of people working TOGETHER, rather than just an impersonal clinic. I was made feel like a patient rather than a walking wallet / ATM. Dr. K is professional (and to the point), Gokce & Yuksel really help to put you at ease and the technicians / nurses in the clinic are professional.

    That it, need I say any more?! Any questions, hit me up!

    Own pictures (waiting on pics from Dr. K)
    POST OP




    PRE OP




    DAY 1




  2. #2
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    I cannot edit the original post, but obviously I mixed up the "post op" and "pre op" pics ... the pictures are obvious enough.

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    good luck with it Irishbogger. first week is hard and just as you get used to feeling the hairs there, they shed. But hey, its part of the process. Im at 9 weeks and in the waiting phase but good on you for taking the first step. Looking forward to seeing your journey.

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    Day 2:


    I don't know if i'm very lucky, or AEK did a good job, but there is very little swelling (Took the head-band off for the first time this morning). There is zero pain (although top of head is still a little numb) and compared with others in the hotel (who are here for same procedure, although not with AEK), there is very little ( almost none) redness on the recipient area (some guys heads look VERY red)... not sure if this is a good thing or bad thing!

    Fair dues to Gokce / Yuksel, I had been Whatsapping some questions and they were very quick to reply - it's the post-op communication that shows an organisations true colours (they have my money, they could choose to ignore me if they want, but they are great re. communication)

    QUESTION: Any medication recommended after? While at the clinic, Gokce briefly mentioned Propecia (Finasteride) - Google seems to suggest 1mg daily. Do you recommend it? My friend said that Dr. K talked to him about it, but he mentioned nothing to me? We're going to get a 1yr supply each regardless and give it a shot, but i'd be interested in hearing others stories.

    Apart from that, all i'm taking (daily) is my Centrum vitimans which i've been taking daily for years (and of course, the anti-biotics & anti-swelling meds that AEK gave me) - I am not taking any painkillers, there's no need.

    For anyone thinking of having this procedure done, JUST DO IT. I feel almost liberated having had it done (although the next few months may be challenging). BUT, do your research and please don't get caught in a factory / hair-mill, there's so many horror stories out there. Thankfully, mine is not one of them.

    DISCLAIMER: When I visited Dr. K yesterday (having bandages removed), I did mention that I had a concern of the hairline not being perfectly symmetrical. Now, I know the face is not perfectly symmetrical, that's a given. But, I see perfect hairlines from post-op pics and I was worried. Dr. K mentioned that this can happen as it's free-hand, but not to be worried as when the hair grows it won't be noticed. I was still a little worried. He stated that if in 12 months it is noticeable, I can return for 2 days and he will correct it. So, if the worst happens, Dr. K, i'll be returning to your clinic!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karlsch View Post
    good luck with it Irishbogger. first week is hard and just as you get used to feeling the hairs there, they shed. But hey, its part of the process. Im at 9 weeks and in the waiting phase but good on you for taking the first step. Looking forward to seeing your journey.
    And thank you, your posts in the past few weeks put me at ease before getting on the flight.

    For anyone else in the same situation; it's natural to be nervous pre-op. For me, as i'd been researching for approx. 6 months... I just wanted to get here and get it over with.

    Now that it's done, I feel great.

    I will say, that travelling with a friend helped a lot (he also had an FUE done with Dr. K yesterday). That said, I wouldn't hesitate to come alone if I had no other choice.

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    Hey irishbogger. regarding the swelling. Theyll start around day 4 to 5. Your headband will keep it above your forehead for the while but after you take it off day 4 youll feel and see the swelling. use cold compresses and keep on the medication. Mine took around 2 days to go down. dont worry. itll pass quickly. next thing is your first wash by yourself. just treat the grafts carefully for the first week and after that when you try to get the scabs off, have a bath and put your head under the water for a while then youll be able to get most of the scabs off fairly easily. enjoy the sensation os seeing the hairs where there havent been but be aware that after around 4 weeks theyll all fall out.
    Take pictures every milestone so youll be able to look back on it and see how far youve come.
    good luck

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    Click image for larger version

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Size:	84.5 KB
ID:	60750

    There was meant to be a pic with Day 2 update...here it is. On the mobile so not hosting to embed

  8. #8
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    Thanks for the update and good to see a fellow Irishman on the boards!

    I'm off to Dr K for the Premium package next Monday. Keep up posted on your progress

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    Hey Irishblogger, thanks for your post, it helped me make the decision to go with Dr K. I'm heading out in February and went with the premium package as well.

    There's not a huge amount of detailed reports on AEK, despite signing up to a few hair loss forums and searching the web extensively. The positive easily outweighs the negative that I have found (ignoring the blatantly scam reviews on Google reviews).

    Not sure I'd be too happy with a non-symetrical hairline, but as you're similar to me in terms of hair loss pattern, a 2nd procedure might be necessary anyway. Anyway, I appreciate things might not look too great right now but would be good to hear updates. I'm already dreading the first 4 months.

  10. #10
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    I thought Dr. Karadeniz did both the extractions and incisions. Did this change recently or am I just misinformed?

    Who were the technicians that did the extractions and implantations?

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