Check the Credentials–Who is Doing My Plastic Surgery?
BUYER BEWARE: WHO IS MY PLASTIC SURGEON?
It’s not uncommon for us to spend months looking around for the right car or even the right Smartphone—why should you spend any less effort in finding and researching your plastic surgeon? Unfortunately, it’s not surprising for someone considering plastic surgery to solely rely on referrals from friends or even ads from magazines. As a plastic surgeon, there’s no question that a referral is the highest compliment I can receive, but I would never advise a new patient to make the decision to put their well-being and appearance in my hands without first thoroughly researching my credentials.
Before you even meet a doctor for a consultation, begin your fact-finding mission by checking their credentials through the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) at www.plasticsurgery.org where all of the surgeons listed through this service are board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. It’s an easy search by name or geographical location. If they are not on this list, then they may not be board-certified in the specialty of plastic surgery. It is as simple as that.
DO YOUR RESEARCHWhen you meet with your physician, another question you should ask is, “Do you have privileges to perform plastic surgery procedures in an accredited hospital?” This can sometimes fly under the radar, because technically, any physician may perform plastic surgery in their own office with no oversight. This is particularly true of minor procedures like Botox and injectables. The word “clinic” can sometimes be deceiving since not all doctors who practice in clinics have the authority to perform surgeries in accredited hospitals. By asking a doctor ahead of time, it guarantees that the doctor is certifiably capable to perform everything they are telling patients they can do. However, if the doctor in question is not allowed to perform plastic surgeries in an accredited hospital then that should be a red flag.
CONCLUSIONI see many cases, as second opinions consultations, where the initial surgery performed by another surgeon did not achieve the patients desired results. Since it is easy to get caught up in the excitement of an enhancement procedure that a patient has been dreaming about or saving money for they convince themselves that a lack of certification or a “deal” is a short-cut worth risking. It is a big deal and could mean a world of difference to you and the outcome of your procedure. Don’t cheat yourself by working with a non-accredited plastic surgeon, or a surgeon practicing outside their core specialty. You’re worth more than that.