When you first meet with a plastic surgeon, you need to use your gut. Trusting the person who is going to help you make a life-changing decision is essential. However, even if a plastic surgeon is charming and confident, this doesn’t mean they should be performing your surgery.
There are a lot of plastic surgery horror stories out there and while nobody likes reading about them, it does make future patients realise how important it is to choose the right professional for the job.
Along with ensuring you feel comfortable with a potential surgeon, there are a few other key factors to consider before you make a final call.
Key Considerations When Evaluating a Potential Plastic Surgeon
- A board certification is not negotiable
Choosing a plastic surgeon who is not board-certified is incredibly risky. It means they haven’t gone through all of the necessary training to be able to perform the procedure you’re interested in. A reputable surgeon will highlight all his/her qualifications online but you can also check whether a surgeon is board-certified by searching for them on the Australian Society of Plastic Surgeons website.
- Check for judgements
You can easily find any information you want on a surgeon by performing a basic online search. It’s important to find out whether a surgeon has any malpractice judgements before you go ahead with your procedure. You can do this by visiting the Medical Board of Australia’s website.
- Find out about hospital privileges
Plastic surgeon Dr Peter Laniewski recommends asking whether a surgeon has any hospital privileges, even if the procedure will be performed on an outpatient basis. Any surgeon who doesn’t have hospital privileges might not be the best choice because hospital privileges aren’t handed out to just anybody.
- Have a list of questions ready to go
You should never enter a consultation room without a list of questions. An experienced surgeon will always be able to answer all of your questions about their qualifications and background as well as the procedure you’re interested in. Don’t feel weird about asking all these questions – your health and results depend on a surgeon’s ability to answer them.
- Be wary of bundle procedures
Combining multiple procedures increases the overall surgical risks. Plus, the more procedures a surgeon can squeeze in, the more money they will make. Surgeons who push you to undergo more than one procedure for no apparent reason are not the right choice. A surgeon can provide you with additional advice but a reputable surgeon will only focus on the procedure you have in mind. It’s easy to be convinced that you require more than one procedure when a surgeon starts throwing medical terminology around, which is why it’s important to research your options beforehand, ensuring you are educated and know enough to understand when you are being talked into something.
There are a lot of highly-qualified and educated surgeons out there, so there’s no need to stress about this process, provided you do your research, ask questions and don’t rush your final decision.