If you have decided to pursue plastic surgery—whether to achieve a look you desire or to modify a surgical outcome that is no longer fulfilling—choosing a surgeon is your next step. Your choice of cosmetic surgeon will be a choice you live with for many years and potentially for your entire life.
Choosing a plastic surgeon with excellent credentials and experience and whom you can trust is the essential first step in achieving your plastic surgical goals. Here are some tips for finding the plastic surgeon that is right for you.
Tips for Choosing a Plastic Surgeon
Find a board-certified cosmetic surgeon who has plenty of experience in your procedure of choice. Ask each surgeon you interview if he or she is board certified by the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery and confirm the surgeon’s experience in the specific procedures you want.
Choose a surgeon whose aesthetic sense appeals to you. Look carefully at the results for each surgeon you interview, including before and after photos, and pay closest attention to patients who have similar physical qualities to yours.
Pay attention to how the surgeon and staff make you feel. Surgery is a big deal; you will want to feel a strong sense of trust. You also want to feel that the surgeon and the staff are genuinely concerned for your health and wellbeing. Ask yourself, would I feel comfortable asking this surgeon any question I might have throughout the process?
Learn about the operating facility. Your safety during surgery depends in large part on the anesthetist and the operating facility. Ensure you will be treated in an accredited operating room. Look for AAAASF, AAAHC, JCAHO, IMQ operating facility certification or another accrediting body that is approved by the state medical board where the surgeon operates. Also ask about the anesthetist’s qualifications. You will want the person administering your anesthesia to be a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) or a Board Certified Anesthesiologist.
Have a conversation. Before you undergo surgery, it is important that you feel comfortable to ask any question you may have and fully understand the risks and realities of the procedure. The best plastic surgery results enable you to adapt and feel comfortable as your body changes, whether due to normal effects of aging, changes in diet and exercise, or other dramatic experiences such as pregnancy. Have a conversation with your prospective surgeon about what this procedure means for you in the short and long term, how you need to prepare for the surgery, and what recovery looks like. You’ll want to leave your consultation feeling fully confident in your decision to have the procedure and in your choice of surgeons.