You have done your homework and decided to undergo a specific surgery. Now you need a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon.
As you don’t purchase a car without test driving, you also need to select a surgeon after exploring your options. The first consultation appointment will help you do that. Not to mention, you not only need to learn about the procedure, but you also need to have a sense of their personality and practice.This will help you communicate all your problems and worries with your surgeon. Plus, you will have multiple follow ups with the surgeon after the procedure.
In order to make the best decision, it’s better to go for more than one option. So, try to consult at least two doctors. Before picking one between the two, consider the following things:
· What is the surgeons’ board certification?
· Do they have hospital privilege?
· Do they have negative online review (check any one star reviews for issues with the surgery)
· Have your friends or family recommended them?
Referrals are not necessary, but having proper education and hospital privileges are a must.
So, when you decide to select a particular surgeon, you need to ask the following questions to ensure that you have chosen the right doctor for you.
1. What methods will work for me?
You may have thought about a specific procedure or treatment, but you should discuss what procedure is best for you during the consultation with your doctor. Yes, the decision is ultimately yours. However, this discussion will help you determine more surgical procedures that you may don't know.
2. Do you have a certificate from the American Board of Plastic Surgery?
By opting for a doctor certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, you can assure that they have proper training. It also ensures they have passed oral and comprehensive written examinations that cover all the plastic surgery methods.
3. Do you have before and after photos?
It is uncommon that a plastic surgeon doesn’t show you their past work in the form of before and after pictures. In case they don’t, ask yourself and look closely. Do you like the results? Are you looking for the same thing? These photos will help you determine the abilities of the doctor.
4. Can you put me in touch with your old patients?
If you have not consulted this doctor because of any recommendation of your friends and family, it’s better to speak to their past patients. This will help you learn more about the surgeon.
5. What will be the cost?
Generally, you have to spend money on several things that you get to know after the surgery. Some surgeons also have hidden fees. The cost can also vary greatly from doctor to doctor. Hence, to avoid all the problems, ask for a comprehensive overview that includes all the post-op and pre-op care costs.
6. How many pre-op appointments will you need?
If you are looking for surgery, your plastic surgeon may recommend clearance from a PCP, a mammogram, or blood work to ensure you are healthy for an elective surgery. Once you know how much time the entire procedure will take from your first consultation to your last day of recovery, you can make the right decision.
7. Where will you perform my procedure?
You need to ensure that your doctors have chosen an accredited facility for your surgery. It should have accreditation from The Joining Commission. Moreover, your doctor is doing outpatient procedures; make sure that your surgeon has hospital privileges to prevent risks in case of any emergency.
8. How are complications handled?
Even if the most qualified surgeon is performing their routine procedure, complications can still occur. This is why you need to ensure that your surgeon has hospital privileges to handle an emergency during outpatient surgery. Once you confirm what process they choose to deal with emergencies in the operating room, it will help give you peace of mind.
9. What is the recovery time?
While there are different plastic surgery methods that you can take in your lunch breaks, others can take a couple of weeks for recovery. Ask your doctor to tell you about the recovery period, and how long you have to wait to resume your regular activities? Also, ask about what side effects you can expect from this method?
10. How many follow up appointments you can expect?
The number of follow up appointments greatly varies according to the procedure. In any case, your doctor will ask for at least one post-op appointment within the first week. Furthermore, surgical patients should have multiple appointments after the procedure.
11. How much time will it take to show results?
Your doctor can tell you a certain timeline in which you can expect results to show.Some procedures show early results, while some take time to fully reveal. So, by asking your doctor, you can easily wait for your results.
Yes, your surgeon doesn’t need to be your best friend, but they should be someone that makes you comfortable during surgery. Moreover, when you get all answers, think about how you have felt while speaking with the doctor? Are you feeling satisfied?
Consider things like, do you have to wait long before the consultation? How were the vibes in the patient room and waiting area? How is the staff? These questions will help you determine whether this place is good for you or not.
Opting for the right cosmetic surgery is crucial, but finding the ideal doctor for your method is key to getting your desired results. Scheduling a consultation with a couple of doctors and asking them these 11 questions will help you make the right decision.