Selecting the right doctor for your plastic surgery is critical, as the results of any cosmetic procedure depend a great deal on the surgeon's artistic eye. The decision to undergo surgery should not be made lightly. Finding a qualified surgeon to perform your procedure is absolutely essential. With a growing number of surgical techniques from which to choose, in addition to a rapidly increasing number of plastic surgeons offering such treatments, you'll have many options available to you.
First, it's important to look for a surgeon with a good reputation. One place to start is checking to see whether the surgeon is board-certified. In the United States, doctors must be certified with the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) before performing plastic surgery.
Another way to find a surgeon with a good reputation is to check with friends or family members who have undergone similar surgical procedures. They may be able to recommend a surgeon they know and trust. Regardless of their opinions, don't forget to look online for reviews from previous patients and contact the Better Business Bureau.
Look for a Specialist
Don't select just any surgeon for your plastic surgery. Instead, seek out one with specialized skills in the type of procedure you wish to undergo. A doctor who performs breast augmentation day in and day out may be very skilled at this procedure, but you may get less than ideal results if you ask that surgeon to perform a tummy tuck or liposuction. This is especially true if the procedure you are seeking out is relatively new; don't be afraid to ask potential surgeons about their qualifications, training, and experience.
Bedside manner and communication
Choosing the right surgeon is as much about their experience and qualifications as what it feels like to sit in their office. The doctor's demeanor and way of communicating can have a substantial impact on how confident you feel heading into surgery. The consultation visit is your chance not only to question the doctor's background, but also to get an idea of how the doctor interacts with patients. consider:
- Do you feel like you see eye-to-eye regarding the aesthetic goals of your procedure?
- Is the surgeon willing to explain the surgical process in detail?
- Does the surgeon understand your expectations?
Consider the costs
Finally, cost plays a factor in most patients' selection of a surgery. Cosmetic procedures are not usually covered by insurance, so you'll need to pay out-of-pocket. Some surgeons charge higher fees than others, of course. Some also offer flexible payment plans for those who can't afford to pay upfront. While you shouldn't base this important decision on cost alone, for most patients it is a consideration. If price is an issue for you, don't be afraid to bring up the surgeon's costs during the consultation visit.
Because the surgeon's work will affect your appearance for years to come, it is important to find a full qualified, highly skilled doctor with whom you feel comfortable.
American Board of Plastic Surgery
Plastic surgeon education requirements