Plastic surgeons perform corrective and reconstructive procedures to correct dysfunctional parts of the body, facial and body defects due to trauma, burns, birth defects and disease. The specific procedure that a plastic surgeon will perform depends on his or her specialty, that is, which part of the body it is. Regardless of the type of procedure you require, you have to choose a good plastic surgeon that you can trust. Find a surgeon who is experienced, qualified and works at a good facility.
Researching a Plastic Surgeon
Ask your general practitioner for a referral to a qualified plastic surgeon. If you trust your current doctor, then there is a good chance you’ll like the one they refer you to. You can also ask friends and family to help, especially those who have already undergone a plastic surgery that turned out well. Ask for recommendations online from related websites or word of mouth recommendations if you’re comfortable enough to talk about the procedure.
Once you have recommendations, ensure you research them all, looking particularly for board certifications and specialization in the area you’re interested in. Certification is not a requirement for surgeons but those who have them have undergone rigorous review processes. You can be sure that they are legit.
Meeting the Surgeons
Once you have a list of potential surgeons to work with, check out where they work. Plastic surgeons can operate from hospitals or private practices. Agencies such as the American Association of Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities (AAASF) ensure that surgery facilities meet acceptable standards, and they advertise these accreditations online. Contact these facilities and set up initial appointments to inspect them.
When meeting the surgeon, prepare a list of questions that will bring out their expertise and experience. You need a surgeon who is not only qualified but also experienced in the procedure. Ask questions about how they trained, and how many years they have been practicing. In addition to that, expect the surgeon to ask you questions. When you are looking to choose a good plastic surgeon, you will want to find out about your medical history, and the reason you want to go through the procedure. Assess how the surgeon makes you feel and go with your gut feeling.
Although plastic surgery doesn’t have to be performed in a hospital, you still need a good facility with all the life-saving equipment for emergency cases. The facility should be fully equipped with equipment such as defibrillators, and ventilators, among others. There should also be other professional assistant staff like nurses to assist the surgeon during the procedure. If the facility’s website does not indicate this, ask the surgeon about it. Ask if the surgeon has any affiliation with any hospital or local hospitals in case unexpected complications arise.
After treatment, you might still need to visit a hospital for follow-up procedures and post-op check-ups, thus you need surgeons who can work well with other hospitals and who have sufficient hospital privileges. Lastly, take time to speak with other non-medical staff such as the receptionist, customer service agents and payment officials. These professionals will play a big role in deciding whether you will have a good experience or not. Find out about the payment details, and if the facility can work with your insurance provider.