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Picking A Plastic Surgeon

The Texas Society of Plastic Surgeons recently ran an ad campaign that, as surprising as it may sound, had a lot of truth in it. The ad? “Unfortunately Some People Are Pickier About Shoes Than About Who Does Their Plastic Surgery.” This honestly scares me, not just as a plastic surgeon, but also as a consumer, a parent, and a grandparent. There is so much information out there that is misleading at best, and medically irresponsible at worst. The “lunch hour nip / tuck” has become commonplace. As the Texas Society points out in their ad, there are many doctors doing plastic surgery today, but not all of them are plastic surgeons. Some doctors take brief courses to learn cosmetic surgery and then begin to advertise their remarkable promises. As a board certified plastic surgeon, I see the aftermath of under-prepared surgeons taking on more than they’re trained to do.

Poor healing
Infection
Muscle paralysis
Filler leaving clearly visible ridges under the facial skin

I’m often called on to try to un-do the damage that has been done and then do the right procedure to achieve the results the patient wanted initially. Becoming a board certified plastic surgeon takes years of intense study. It’s simply not reasonable to have a surgical procedure done by someone who hasn’t studied, trained and been certified to do the surgery.

This is surgery, not a manicure. It’s important to consider what it is you want to accomplish and the best and safest way to do that. Do your own due diligence. Check with more than one plastic surgeon. As boring as it may sound – and it’s actually worse than it sounds – but read the surgeons CV. This listing of training, education, accomplishments, publications, etc., will let you know how serious your surgeon is about becoming the best possible plastic surgeon. There is no safe way to stop learning for a surgeon. The procedure that was cutting edge a few years ago has long since become antiquated by the newest standards of excellence. When it comes to your health, your safety, your body, your life – you’re only cheating yourself to settle for anything less than an excellent plastic surgeon. Be picky! Don’t short change yourself and in the haste to save a few dollars, lose something that can never be replaced.

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