When you’re considering different plastic surgeons in Dallas, you may wonder what criteria you should use to help guide your decision. Here are a few of the specific areas I think are most helpful to consider when choosing a plastic surgeon.
1. Board-certification. Legally, any doctor can offer cosmetic surgery – even if they are not a trained plastic surgeon. A plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, however, has undergone extensive training (between 5 – 7 years) and passed a series of examinations in the field of plastic surgery. It is also important to note that there is a difference between a “plastic surgeon” and a “cosmetic surgeon.” Although many cosmetic surgeons are very well-qualified, they are not subjected to the same rigorous standards of certification as board-certified plastic surgeons.
2. Area(s) of specialization. Some plastic surgeons may choose to take on additional training in a specific area of interest, or they may be well-known for their skill in a certain procedure. For example, at my practice, I perform a higher than average number of rhinoplasty and facelift procedures, which is why I frequently work with patients who are interested in facial cosmetic surgery. If you are interested in a specific procedure, be sure to choose a surgeon with experience in that area.
3. Personality: Credentials and training are important, but it’s also important to feel comfortable about your surgeon. By choosing someone whose personality matches well with yours, you are more likely to have a positive experience. Some people may prefer a doctor who takes a very clinical approach, while others may prefer a more personable tone.
4. Trust: Never choose a plastic surgeon that you do not completely trust. Your surgeon should answer all of your questions honestly (without sugar-coating the surgical experience), explain the benefits and risks of surgery, and provide you with the information you need to make an educated, informed choice. It may be helpful to write down your initial feelings about a surgeon, the office, and the staff immediately after your consultation in order to reflect on your impression about the practice.
5. Personal Referrals: Friends or family members who have had plastic surgery can be great resources for narrowing down your list of options. Find out what they liked and didn’t like about the surgeon and schedule a consultation to form your own opinion.