Picking a plastic surgeon can seem like a daunting task. Most people ask friends who have had procedures for their recommendations. Many with aspirations of rejuvenation turn to the internet, hoping that a Google search will yield the best choice. This article summarizes the important factors in choosing a plastic surgeon.
- Board Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
Being a good plastic surgeon starts with having the proper training. Unfortunately, anyone with a medical license can call themselves a plastic surgeon and advertise their services. They may even say that they are board certified; however, it may not be in plastic surgery. The American Board of Plastic Surgery is the only plastic surgery board recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties.
- Member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons
To be a member of the ASPS, you must be board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, you must be in good professional standing, and you must operate in accredited hospitals or surgery centers.
- Good Before and After Pictures
Make sure you like the results the surgeon produces. Perfect results are not possible and the amount of improvement possible is different for everyone; however, you should be happy with the amount of improvement you see in most of the surgeons before and after photos.
- Takes time to explain choices, risks and sets expectations for recovery
If a surgeon takes the time to explain these things well, they are really looking out for your best interests. It is very important that you understand your choices as a potential patient so that you make sure a procedure is right for you. Be clear about potential risks to make sure you are willing to accept them, no matter how unlikely complications may be. Clear expectations about recovery are CRITICAL. You need to know what to expect with healing, how to avoid messing up your result and when to expect your result to look good.
- You are confident the surgeon understands your goals
You are considering plastic surgery because you want to achieve a certain result. A plastic surgeon has little hope of getting that result for you if they do not clearly understand what you want. Further, your expectations may be unrealistic and the only way you will know that is if the surgeon figures that out and educates you about what is possible. Getting what you want starts with you and your surgeon being on the same page.
- Surgeon and office staff are warm and responsive
You will be spending a lot of time interacting with your surgeon and their office staff. A lot of this time may be when you are recovering and not feeling your best. Make sure the surgeon and staff make you feel better after an interaction than you felt before. If a surgeon and office staff seem unresponsive, rude or indifferent before surgery, the situation will seem a lot worse during recovery.