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A Rebuttal to NBC Dateline’s Hair Transplant Newspiece

By Steven Cotlar

The recent dateline show focused on a physician who has been very successful in developing the hair transplantation industry. While much of what was presented is open to interpretation, most would agree that much of the criticism was directed towards the doctor’s business approach to a medical situation. Several persons, including a physician who was once affiliated with the doctor, were interviewed. Allegations including claims that a strong sales approach was used and information that should have mentioned was not, and some claims were made that should not have.

Little mention was given to what, if any responsibility, the patient has in his selection process. For example, one of the patient complaints had to do with scarring resulting from the procedure. However, it was make quite clear to the viewers that before surgery, signature on a operative permit was required in all cases. Such a document clearly states that scars may result, as well as other potential problems.

Another complaint voiced by a patient was that he had his consultation done by a sales type person. He did not meet the doctor until just shortly before the procedure, and only a small amount of time was allotted to discussion. One might logically wondered that if this individual didn’t like the situation, why go through with the surgery. If he wanted things more personalized, there are available options.

As a rule, hair transplant patients are extremely knowledgeable about their condition and treatment options, including surgery. Most have done extensive reading and many, if not most have seen more than one physician before making their final choice. Is it possible that they make their choice based on hearing what they want to hear and not hearing what they don’t want to hear?


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