A BRITISH man was left with bald spots and scarring after undergoing hair transplant surgery in Turkey.
Luke Horsfield had always felt self conscious about his thinning hair line and decided to take action and booked surgery at the clinic in Istanbul.
The 26-year-old found the clinic online advertising the procedure for £1,250, around half the price of what it would cost in the UK.
Around 6.5 million men in the UK suffer from hair loss.
Luke said he began to notice his hair thinning when he was 21 and decided years later to go under the knife.
He underwent a six hour operation at the Clinic Center in Istanbul in December 2018.
After the procedure he was left with scars and bald patches but his hair failed to grow back.
He said the surgeons at the clinic didn’t speak English and removed too many follicular units from the back of his head.
The procedure sees hair follicles removed from the side and back of a patient’s scalp and injected into the front where the balding occurs.
Luke claims the procedure at the Turkish clinic led to further thinning of his hair which he eventually had repaired by another clinic in Yorkshire.
The Clinic Center, where Luke had his first procedure, is a UK registered company and a statement on its website claims to “offer the best medical care abroad for you, your family and loved ones”.
But Luke said he wasn’t able to get in touch with the clinic once they completed the botched surgery despite the clinic stating that it offers “transplant after care”.
The IT technician said: “I did everything they told me to do as aftercare once I had the operation.
“But after four months, I saw literally no growth. I rang them to ask why it hadn’t grown, but I was told this was normal.
“It got to six months and there was a little bit of growth but not much and after a year it still hadn’t grown. I was left with scars and bald patches.”
Luke from Bradford said he asked for a refund but claimed his complaint fell on deaf ears.
He claims the clinic offered him another operation at half the price.
They eventually offered Luke a £400 refund, barely a third of what he paid for the botched job.
Low self esteem
Luke said he thought he had found a bargain deal, but has now urged other men to fully research procedures and clinics.
He added: “I had always been really self-conscious about my hair and I hated it being wet or getting blown in the wind.
“I’d always spend extra time styling it before going out, trying to hide my bald spot.
“It was affecting my confidence and my self-esteem and it was something I’d been wanting to do for a few years.
What is a hair transplant?
Hair transplants are primarily used to treat male baldness but can also be used on females and for other procedures such as beard transplants.
A hair transplant is a surgical technique that removes hair follicles from one part of the body to a bald or balding part of the body.
This is usually from the back or side of the head to the front of the head.
They would typically occur under local anesthesia.
Pattern baldness is responsible for the majority of hair loss cases and this is usually genetic.
Other factors can also contribute including:
- hormonal imbalance
“I looked into it and a lot of the places offering the treatment in the UK charged around £6,000, but they were offering it for £1,250.”
He said the clinic had great reviews on Trust Pilot, leading him to believe he was getting “good value for money”.
“What I didn’t know then was that anyone can post a review and companies can ask for reviews to be taken down, so I feel like I wasn’t getting a full picture.”
After the operation Luke posted a review on YouTube.
Do your research
He was then contacted by the Hair Dr clinic in West Yorkshire who offered to fix the botched surgery.
On March 3 he went under the knife and has now said the treatment he got in the UK was “world’s apart” from what he received in Turkey.
“In Turkey, the surgeons didn’t even speak English so I had to communicate through a translator.
“They’ve done a great job and I’ve already noticed signs of growth in my hairline.
“I’d just encourage anyone to properly research the clinic and operations first.”
Dr Arshad, the lead surgeon at the Hair Dr transplant clinic, who carried out the repair procedure on Luke said Luke’s case had “really struck a chord” with him when he saw his video on YouTube.
“I see so many clients in this unfortunate position on an almost weekly basis.
The dos and don’ts of getting a hair transplant
What to look out for when booking your transplant
Many people can look abroad for cosmetic procedures as many clinics often offer a cheaper rate.
One expert told The Sun that more often than not, many people are returning with complications.
Dr Knut Moe, Medical Director at Sons said clinics abroad can seem attractive due to a bargain price.
“Patients can get drawn in by free consultations and sales pitches with offers of free flights, accommodation and knockdown rates for hair transplants.
“The reality though is that too often we are seeing men return with hair transplant surgery that has gone wrong or had complications.
“Anyone can put up a nice-looking website to sell transplants, but it takes skill and training to do hair transplants properly.”
He added that transplants change your scalp permanently and that they can leave scars and alter your appearance.
“It is much better to get no transplant at all rather than getting the wrong transplant at the wrong time.”
He said if you’re looking for a transplant then are some things you need to do first.
“Men thinking of getting a transplant should ask themselves if a transplant is the right option for them, will they look back in 5 or 10 years and say ‘ why didn’t someone stop me?’ – if they do decide to get a transplant, they need to ask are the surgeons qualified, is the after care good enough, does the clinic have a good reputation – these transplants are permanent, remember.
“Most people don’t need a transplant if they catch their hair loss early enough and could manage their hair loss with medication such as Finasteride and Minoxidil which are proven to be affordable, safe and effective (in over 90% of men).”
“Before embarking on a hair transplant it is imperative that research is carried out on the clinic and the surgeon.
“Hair transplant is very safe surgery but is not free of potentially serious side effects if it is not conducted by a qualified surgeon in the correct way.”
He urged people to check the surgeon has a credible track record in the field and to check that they are a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of
England before embarking on such a sensitive procedure.
“That way we can try and limit the number of unfortunate stories like Luke’s”, he added.
The Clinic Center told The Sun that it treats 2,000 patients a year – most of which are from the UK.
They said: “We followed Luke’s healing process after a month, three months and six months. He was not happy with his results and we told him to wait until 12 months to see the final result.”
They said this is because in hair transplants you can “see the final results in 12 months”.
“Some patients have a great look after 6 months but some of them have poor results in the 6th month but a great result after 12th.
“Unfortunately, Luke had a complication after his hair transplant which we rarely experience”.
They added that Luke “refused their help”.
“Patient satisfaction is our primary concern and we always improve our services accordingly.
“We are sad that he was not happy with his treatment but we wish that he could have let us assist him”, a spokesperson added.
View more information: https://www.the-sun.com/news/989020/brit-left-horrific-scars-botched-1250-hair-transplant-turkey/