It might surprise to learn that Istanbul, Turkey is the hair restoration capital of the world. A recently published work by photographer Emanuele Satolli takes people behind the scenes of the hair transplant industry over there. More than 5,000 people visit Turkey every month for the procedure and there are more than 350 clinics that specialize in hair restoration. All in all, hair transplants are big business in Turkey, bringing in $1 billion annually.
Although you can travel across the Atlantic to have your lost hair restored, there are plenty of options in the US. In many ways, staying stateside for your surgery makes a lot more sense. It’s more affordable, there’s less travel involved, and you have a good understanding of how the medical system works. If you do need to travel for your procedure, there are a few things to know first.
Depending on where you are traveling from, the easiest way to get to Virginia Beach for a hair transplant might be to fly in. The nearest major airport is Norfolk International Airport. If you are coming from somewhere along the east coast, you can also take the train to the Norfolk Amtrak Station.
Give yourself plenty of time to travel before the procedure. Even if you’ve had a consultation with the surgeon over the phone or by email, it’s a good idea to schedule a separate, in-person consult before your procedure. The consultation can take place right before surgery or the day before, depending on your schedule. Regardless of when you schedule your consultation, it’s a good idea to plan on arriving in the area the day before it, so that you have some time to relax and see the sites before your transplant.
How Long to Stay
One of the great things about a hair transplant is that it is a relatively straightforward, comfortable procedure. There’s not a great deal of downtime. That means you don’t have to linger in the area, waiting in your hotel room for many days afterwards. You might feel well enough to travel back the day after the surgery. If you’re flying, it might be best to wait a few days before you return.
In all, you’ll usually need at least two or three days off from work after a hair transplant. Scheduling your transplant for a Friday, traveling on Thursday, and returning home at the end of the weekend will help you fit the surgery into your life almost seamlessly.
Don’t travel for your hair restoration procedure alone! Even if you aren’t an out-of-town patient, your surgeon will generally expect you to bring along a close friend or loved one. After the surgery, you’re likely to be a bit loopy and out-of-it from the sedation. You’ll need someone to help you get back to your hotel without any problems and someone to stay by your side for the first day or so and help you with whatever you might need.
Since any pain relievers you might take after surgery can mean driving is off-limits, you’ll also need to have a friend or family member around to drive you back to the airport, train station, or even all the way back home afterwards.
If There are Problems
If you’re traveling from one state to another for your transplant, you might be somewhat concerned about complications cropping up after you’ve returned home. While complications can’t be ruled out, the chances of them occurring can be drastically reduced. Make sure you follow your surgeon’s instructions concerning shampooing your scalp, exercising, and avoiding certain activities after the transplant, for the best results.
You can also get back in touch with your surgeon if you have any issues after the surgery. Over the phone or via email, the surgeon can address any concerns you might have. Of course, if you think you are having an emergency, the best thing to do is go right to the nearest hospital, not call your hair transplant surgeon.
Even if you don’t have any issues or complications after surgery, it’s a good idea to check in with your surgeon after a few months. You can let your doctor know about the progress of your hair, whether it has begun to regrow, for example. Your surgeon can let you know if you’re on the right track or make further recommendations, as needed.
In the Virginia Beach area, board certified facial plastic surgeon and hair restoration specialist Dr. Kyle Choe performs hair transplants on many patients each week. To learn more about the surgery and to find out if you’re a good candidate for it, call (757) 389-5850 today.