Plastic Surgery Advisor

Is Your Plastic Surgeon Board Certified?
...and other questions you should ask before undergoing plastic surgery.

Before undergoing cosmetic surgery or reconstructive surgery, carefully study this checklist that we have published, in order to make sure that the doctor you are considering for your next procedure is a board certified plastic surgeon, that his or her practice and procedures are safe, that he or she has the overall training and experience necessary to be qualified, plus many other factors, that make your potential doctor fully capable and competant when it comes time to perform surgery on you.

1. Experience
When deciding on the right doctor, it is important that not only he or she have ample training, but also the experience to back it up. Certainly, every doctor has to start somewhere, and they typically go through years and years of training and testing before being able to perform major surgeries on their first real patients. By that time, provided that the credentials of the medical institutions that they went to are good, then any patient should be able to confidently be put under and submit themselves to surgery.

But are you really willing to be that patient?

Better, go with a doctor with years of experience. While some may consider this an excessive safety measure, we believe it is your right as an informed consumer to demand that your plastic surgeon not only have extensive medical training, but also extensive experience. Some may consider this a fine point, but even so, at the critical moment, it could make a world of difference.

2. Education and Training
While experience is crucial to determining whether a plastic surgeon is right for you, a fundamental place to start out when researching a plastic surgeon is looking at the education he or she has received, and the credentials that he or she has obtained.

Where did your plastic surgeon go to school? Believe it or not, the name of the school can say a lot about the caliber of the physician, the thoroughness of training, and the ultimate rate of success and failure that the doctor will experience in the real world.

3. Hospital vs. Doctor's Office
Saving money is one of the numerous benefits to having your plastic surgery performed in the doctor's office, rather than in an outpatient facility. Other benefits include privacy and comfort. Yet don't be blinded by the upsides, or you could end up blinded by your eyelid surgery. Does your doctor have the proper safety amenities readily available? Monitoring devices and life-saving equipment should be up to par per government inspections, and he and his staff should be able to readily provide you with a rundown of what they have in place to save your life in the extremely rare, but possible case of an emergency.

4. Anaesthesiologist
You're spending a lot of time researching the safety and qualifications of your plastic surgeon, but what about the anaesthesiologist, the person who puts you down? These medical professionals take your life in their hands with a single pinch of the syringe, or turn of the nob. A single mistake can mean life or death - so you will want to know whether or not your anaesthesiologist is qualified and up to par.

5. Board Certification
In addition to training, education and experience covered above, your plastic surgeon should be board certified. This stamp of approval is no small matter, and absence from credible, reliable boards should raise red warning flags and sound the alarm bells. Don't go near a plastic surgeon who does not have board certification. And while you are at it, find out if the plastic surgeon you are considering is licensed to practice medicine in your state.

By becoming an informed consumer, you dramatically reduce your chances of injury or mispractice. It is amazing how these small, but essential steps to verifying your doctor's qualifications - before you undergo plastic surgery - can make such a difference. Of course, as with any medical procedure, things can always go wrong, no matter how far you, as a wise consumer, pair down the probability of an accident occuring. All the more reason to research ahead of time. If, in the best of hands, something goes wrong, all your research will give you immediate recourse to the appropriate people to talk to - the board that certified your doctor, the hospital where your surgery was performed, the school your doctor went to, etc.

So no matter which way you look at it, it pays to do the research.

Find out more about checking out plastic surgeons at WomensHealth.GOV: Cosmetic Surgery Checklist




© Copyright 2007 - 2011 PlasticSurgeryAdvisor.ORG - Cosmetic Surgery Resource