When you decide to have a cosmetic procedure or plastic surgery performed, you want to feel as though you can trust your surgeon implicitly. The results of your surgery will have much to do with how confident you feel in your own skin, how happy you are with your body and how good you perceive your quality of life to be. These days, you have thousands of choices when it comes to plastic surgeons. A quick online search will yield pages of results, many of them boasting their great results and the many types of procedures that they can do. However, you cannot be sure that you have chosen the best plastic surgeon for your needs until you complete the following steps.
Thoroughly Research a Few Websites
Once you narrow your search down to a few potential surgeons, be sure to thoroughly review their websites before scheduling a visit. When looking at a website like the one for Desired Beauty you will notice that there will probably be information on things like the surgeons and their certifications, the types of surgeries performed, patient testimonials, financing information and maybe even a blog. Looking at all of this before you visit a surgeon for the first time, will give you a good starting point for the rest of the checklist below.
Check for Board Certification
Board certification tells you that the practitioner you are looking at is in good standing with nationally recognized boards that ensure excellence in medical practice in their physicians. Two of the most important certifications for a plastic surgeon are the American Board of Plastic Surgery and the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery certifications. These essential certifications tell you that the physician completed a minimum of six years of training in surgery along with a lengthy plastic or cosmetic surgery residency. Plus, certification ensures that the surgeon is in good standing with his or her board and that the surgeon has kept up with continuing education and testing.
Check for Prior Experience
Next, you will want to ensure that the plastic surgeon has plenty of experience. In particular, ask about his or her experience in doing your desired procedure. Some practitioners consider one area of the body to be their specialty. Therefore, if you want a facelift, you will not want to go to a surgeon who does mainly breast lifts.
Look at the Results of Past Procedures
Once you know that your desired plastic surgeon is indeed board certified by a nationally recognized board, you will want to consider results from past work. While his or her surgeries may have been done well and with a minimum of side effects, the results may not match the aesthetic results that you desire. You can check for before-and-after photographs of previous patients on the surgeon’s website, or you can ask to see photographs for your desired procedure at an in-person consultation.
Visit the Clinic
Once you have done some of this preliminary investigative work, it is time for you to visit the clinic. This will give you a chance to meet people who will be involved in your care and to see the clinic for yourself. Determine if you like the atmosphere, if it is welcoming and if it is large enough to allow your privacy to be protected when you are talking with staff in reception. Look to see if the facility seems to be well-kept and if bathrooms and public areas are clean. Of course, you must be sure that you get along well with the surgeon. Ask yourself how much you feel that you can trust the surgeon and how honest you feel that you can be with him or her.
Learn about the Operating Facility
Keep in mind that your surgery will be performed in a separate facility most of the time. You will also want to ask about this facility, ensuring that it is accredited or state-licensed. Ask about JCAHO accreditation, which is a good indicator of how safe the facility is. The safety of your procedure is directly dependent on how good the operating facility is and on how competent the nurses, anesthesiologists and other staff there are.
Meet the Ancillary Staff
While you are visiting the clinic, take time to talk with the ancillary staff who will be helping you on your journey. Find out how friendly the reception staff is and how quickly they answer telephones. Positive or negative customer service will reflect greatly on how happy you are with the results of your surgery. You may also want to chat with the associate in billing as well as with your surgeon’s nurse who may be the one answering the majority of your questions.
Choosing a plastic surgeon should be done with a great deal of thought and plenty of research. By putting this extra time into ensuring you have found the right practitioner, you can help secure pleasing results for yourself. Always choose a surgeon whom you can trust and who works with staff with whom you feel comfortable.