How to Choose a Cosmetic Surgeon – Tips and Advice
Before we delve into How to Choose a Cosmetic Surgeon, let’s start with the choice of a surgeon is not something you decide lightly, especially with cosmetic procedures. The surgeon you select will determine the quality of your results and keep you safe. Patients tend to focus on results and the doctor’s experience, which are essential, but that is an incomplete approach. A more well-rounded criterion is to choose a cosmetic surgeon with excellent technique, experience, state-of-the-art technology, and exceptional safety protocols is essential.
There are many cosmetic surgeons to choose from, but sure that the one you choose to perform your surgery meets essential criteria. This is not a decision to rush.
5 Tips to Start
If you have already decided to undergo cosmetic surgery, the next step is to select the doctor who will change your appearance forever. Whether or not you are going based on a recommendation from a friend or as a result of your own research, it is useful to check this initial summary of tips:
- A properly trained cosmetic surgeon will be certified by the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgeons.
- Look for their diplomas in their office. Ask about their cosmetic surgery training.
- A reputable surgeon will not offer unobtainable, unrealistic solutions. Websites with a limited number of before and after’s may only show the best of the very best.
- Never choose solely based on costs. Focus on their experience, listening skills, and how collaborative the doctor is. Remember that cheap is not always best, in fact, the adage “You get what you pay for” is especially true with cosmetic surgery.
- Verify that the surgery will be performed in a specialized surgical center with excellent safety precautions.
6 Detailed Decision-Making Points on How to Choose a Cosmetic Surgeon
The results of the surgery depend largely on the doctor who performs it so focus on their listening skills, experience, and collaborative approach versus their popularity in social networks. Instagram likes can be bought but skill and expertise cannot.
These 7 points are a guide to making the best choice for a cosmetic surgeon whom you trust, love their work, you feel you are getting great value for your discretionary dollars.
1. The First Visit
Think of your consultation with a cosmetic surgeon as a discovery session. Chances are you have already researched their results or had a glowing referral from a friend. The consultation is the time for you to evaluate their other skills like listening to your concerns and questions, finding out more about the technologies they use, and of course how they address the expectations you have for your results.
Make sure that the doctor:
- Does a complete medical and cosmetic assessment and offers the most appropriate recommendations for you
- Explains your surgery in detail
- Displays confidence, not arrogance, in their ability and recommendations
- Discusses the type of anesthesia that will be used or offers options
- Is accessible should complications arise
- Is not in a hurry
- Shows empathy with your concerns and goals
2. Academic Training
The surgeon’s career summary will give you a good idea of his experience. One of the most important things you should verify is their cosmetic surgery training and experience. There are general surgeons doing cosmetic procedures which is only not optimal unless they have extensive cosmetic experience or have taken cosmetic surgery training. Many plastic surgeons have little experience and training in cosmetic surgery as their residency focused mostly on reconstructive techniques, not cosmetic procedures. The training experience of the surgeon and their team is foundational to your results and safety.
The more surgeries the surgeon has performed, the greater their experience. When choosing a surgeon, the longer their career, the more skilled their techniques, the better for the patient. Ask about their surgical team since in a surgery the anesthesiologist and other team members play a vital role in your results and safety.
3. Recommendations From Other Patients
Although each patient has their own experience and goals, the feedback of those who have had surgery are helpful. Don’t be shy about asking to talk to patients that are in the office for follow-up. Their recent experience is useful and gives you the best insight into the doctor’s processes and results.
4. The Pre-Operative Visit
Surgery is not something to be taken lightly. You should expect to give a complete medical history and orders for tests to check for anemia, nicotine, and possibly, COVID to name some of the common tests. This information determines if you are eligible for surgery and gives your surgeon the opportunity to make recommendations to ensure you are as healthy as possible.
5. Post-Operative and Follow-up Appointments
During the postoperative period, the doctor should schedule regular follow-up evaluations to check that you are healing well and so that complications can be avoided.
Ask about the schedule of post-operative appointments and if your surgery requires other after-treatments. Some types of liposuction, like VASER High-Definition, have mandatory lymphatic drainage massage to help release more fat cells and ensure your new shape is perfect.
6. The Cost of Your Surgical Plan
Cosmetic surgery can vary dramatically in cost from surgeon to surgeon even for the same procedures. Keep in mind, you are paying for the experience, years of study, unique methodology, and popularity of a highly trained professional. Even a doctor’s choices in the technologies will impact the cost. Surgeons that are always expanding their training and use state-of-the-art equipment may be worth a premium vs. more traditional practices.
Be wary of discount cosmetic surgery. You get what you pay for has never been more accurate and chances on your will be living with the results for a long time! Talented, highly qualified, in-demand surgeons do not dramatically discount their services. Most expensive is certainly not always the best either. That’s why you have to be smart about doing your research and weigh price and value.
A Checklist For Your Initial Consult
Having cosmetic surgery is elective and the surgeon you chose is an important decision. Make yourself a list of topics you want to discuss and let the doctor know
During your consultation here is a checklist of the relevant points on how to choose a cosmetic surgeon:
____ Time practicing surgery
____ Before and after photos. Meet post-op patients in the office if you can
____What you want vs. what the doctor recommends. Make sure you understand the surgical plan and the plan is a collaboration between you and your surgeon
____What type of anesthesia – local, deep sedation, or general
____ If there is a possibility of a second surgery
____ The expectations they assure you regarding the results
____ The level of commitment shown during postoperative appointments. Does it sound like it is as important to the doctor as booking your surgery?
____ Honesty about potential complications.
____ The total cost of your surgical plan, including the Surgeon’s fee, the facility, the Anesthesiologist, garments, massages, medications
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