How to Avoid Black Market Clinics

August 28, 2019

In Turkey although there are regulations for surgical procedures, these regulations are not adhered to at all and the regulatory bodies don’t check, they don’t care because lots of money is coming into the country and that outweighs any adhesion to regulations.

In saying that there are very good clinics in Turkey but there is a huge black market there also.  There is a very big problem with Black Market Hair Transplantation Clinics all over the world, but Turkey is the place that affects the Europeans most.


You can only get FUE done in turkey as FUT can only be done by a skilled surgeon. No black-market clinic will have a skilled surgeon; they barely have skilled technicians therefore they can’t do FUT.  What these Black-market clinics are very good at is advertising false information, offering you huge transplants at a very small price (the average wage in Turkey is €460 per month), producing fake images and results.  They will tell you that FUT is a dinosaur procedure not done anymore as FUE is far superior.  This is not true, if a clinic tells you this it means they don’t have a doctor in their clinic therefore can’t carry out FUT. These clinics don’t have doctors they use technicians to do all the extraction and by that, I mean punching out the grafts in the donor area and doing the incisions in the recipient area. These two must be done by a doctor, a technician is not allowed.


FUT has been around for a long time and has evolved and improved over time and it is still the preferred option for most of the top hair transplant clinics in the world.  It has stood the test of time.  FUE –  it remains to be seen if it will stand the test of time.  Another false piece of information out there is graft numbers.  You need to be very careful when talking graft numbers. These black-market clinics will tell you you need 3,000, 4,000 or even 5,000 grafts and they will do it for €1,500.  Firstly are they counting hairs or hair grafts???  A hair is 1 single hair, and a hair graft can range from 1 -4  hairs but the temptation is to split follicles into smaller groups of hairs which allows for gaming within the industry and transplant of “larger numbers of hairs”  (split hairs!!!!.). They will always use the word graft but they mean hairs.  For example, 2,000 hair grafts that we would extract composing of 500 3 hair follicle, 1000 2 hair follicles and 500 1 hair follicles would amount to 4000 hairs, so you must be very careful when talking numbers because the black-market clinics maybe talking about single hairs but use the word grafts.  So, we can also do a 4000- HAIRS transplant while extracting 2000 hair GRAFTS.


Why do we not do do/say this, well 4000 single hairs split can damage the HAIR and  transplanted over a large area if done well will produce a very light, thin covering as there is only single hairs being put in.  What we do is keep the 2 and 3 hair grafts unsplit. We place the 3 hair grafts at the back of the transplanted area (which would be smaller as we would use medication to fill in the crown area) 2 hair graft in the middle of the transplanted area and the single hair grafts at the front. This gives density in the right place.

So,  you need to avoid black market clinic and it’s very difficult to figure out which are black market and which are real.  Also to be aware that Irish clinics use technicians from other countries like Turkey and only technicians, they fly them in to do a few transplants and then fly them back home on a regular basis because it’s cheaper to do this and at the same time they are charging the high prices.  So, the big message to get across is to do your homework on the clinic, who’s running the clinic and who is preforming the procedure. Get names and IMC no’s because if they are operating in Ireland they need an imc no.


We get clients coming into us telling us what they need (3,000, 4,000, 5,000 grafts) without having all the facts and they are not prepared to look after the hair after transplant.  The client needs to take the advice of the surgeon and be prepared to look after their hair.  Would you get a liver transplant and then continue drinking and refuse to take medication to look after your new liver?  No, you wouldn’t and it’s the same with your new hair.


We have had numerous people come to us having already had a transplant, and are looking for another because they are not happy.  There is no comeback if you go abroad and there is no aftercare.  We have had people whose donor area is completely depleted and we can’t correct their transplant because there are no more grafts to take from the donor area. We have men who have been given a female hair line, odd looking hairlines and very bad hairlines, hair at the front but nothing behind.  We have seen very patchy transplants, Scaring in the transplanted area from bad placing, bald patches at the back and much more.  Some of these can be corrected but a lot of them can’t.


One client came to us looking for a second transplant after having had a transplant in Ireland by Turkish technicians who were to do two on that day he was due in a 4 o’clock for his transplant but there were problems with the first transplant and they didn’t start his transplant until 7pm that evening.  Anyone in their right mind would have postponed this transplant until another day but they didn’t because they had a flight to catch back to Turkey early the next morning so they did the transplant that evening.  He was booked in and paid for a 2000 graft transplant and he got 800 grafts.  After paying a lot of money to this clinic they didn’t even have the decency to address this issue they told him to go away and wanted nothing more to do with him. Another client of ours had a transplant done in another Irish clinic and paid €10,000 for it.  It didn’t work the hair didn’t grow.  This person went back to them to see if they would sort it out and they said a well so be it and no you can’t have a refund and we won’t fix the problem.  No clinic is perfect, everyone experiences problems.  No clinic has a 100% success rate.  Every clinic will have transplants that don’t work, but for god sake if you do a bad transplant correct it or give them a refund, it’s the only ethical thing to do.


So, in finishing we at Tir na nÒg Clinic stand by all our transplants, we carefully select our clients, we employ local people, we have a professional and widely respected clinic, we don’t over charge  and we don’t under charge like Turkey…as we have to pay taxes and pay our staff a decent wage ( unlike in Turkey). If all you’re interested in is getting a transplant as cheap as possible, to hell with quality and service then go to Turkey but if you want to get a decent transplant and more importantly want to keep it then give us a call.