Choosing the Right Surgeon Makes All the Difference
Let’s say you’ve decided to make time for yourself and do something for you – congratulations! Making that step can be hard for some, but once you have, the time comes to find the right doctor who will treat and take care of you the way you deserve.
Because the Mommy Makeover procedures involve surgery, it’s extremely important to find a surgeon qualified and worthy of your time, money and trust. Make sure you understand who you will be working with and be certain they are right for you.
Cosmetic vs. Plastic Surgeons
Many doctors offer cosmetic procedures, and many consider themselves cosmetic surgeons. However, a cosmetic surgeon and a plastic surgeon are not the same. While it’s true that all plastic surgeons are cosmetic surgeons, the reverse is not true. Plastic surgeons are trained in cosmetic and reconstructive surgery of the face and body (some are facial plastic surgeons only). A cosmetic surgeon may have a completely different kind of training.
To give you an idea of the difference:
- A board-certified plastic surgeon must have a minimum of five years of residency training in all areas of surgery, including at least two years devoted entirely to plastic surgery. To become board-certified, the doctor then must pass comprehensive written (400 questions) and oral exams (where a panel of experienced expert surgeons grills you to make sure everything you do in and out of the operating room is appropriate, safe, and ethical).
- A cosmetic surgeon on the other hand is a physician in any other specialty (like OB/GYN or an emergency doctor), but they may have only taken a course (often over just a weekend) in cosmetic surgery.
Keep in mind, these procedures require expertise and the more of a procedure someone’s been tested on and actually done, the better. A good rule of thumb is you’ll want the surgeon to have dealt with issues at least as complicated as your own – more complicated is even better. Bottom line: You want a board-certified plastic surgeon.
Tips for Finding the Right Surgeon
Being prepared with questions you want answered is essential in your investigation process. To help you create specific questions and get more information consider the following:
- Websites - Browse through many websites to see which doctor’s style makes you feel most comfortable. Look at the verbiage on the web pages to determine how they speak to their patients. Look at before and after pictures of the surgeon’s work, and try to find a patient with similar characteristics to yourself.
- References - Check online for patient reviews to ensure that the surgeon has plenty of satisfied patients. If possible, try to speak with former patients of the doctor you are considering. Be leery of surgeons who won’t allow this—ask yourself if they are trying to hide something. Patients will likely give you the unabridged version of their experience.
- Consultations – Schedule a time to meet face to face with your potential surgeon so that you get to know each other and so you can get a feel for how they interact with you. When you first visit the surgeon, you shouldn’t feel rushed or get the impression of a giant mass production machine. You should feel free to ask the surgeon anything, including details of his or her training and experience and what the surgery will cost. If you don’t perceive a good connection with the surgeon or if you don’t like any of his or her answers, it may be time to interview someone else.
In the end you’ll want to find a doctor that strives to provide all the information they can to you – someone who ensures you understand what the procedures mean, and what to expect before, during and after your surgery. Choose a doctor who wants to get to know you, what your thoughts are on things and how they can help you the most.
Learn more about my practice, Music City Plastic Surgery or more about whether a Mommy Makeover is right for you!