Why the Best Answer Is Sometimes ‘No’

Some of the best advice I have to offer plastic surgery patients is to be OK with the word “no.” Trust me — there is a positive motivation behind it. In my many years as a plastic surgeon near Vancouver, I have performed numerous revision surgeries for the face, breasts, and body, often because somewhere along the line another surgeon didn’t tell his or her patient “no.”

All plastic surgeons will inevitably meet a patient who insists on certain options, despite being advised against them. Perhaps the patient wants just breast implants when she really needs a breast lift at the same time; or perhaps the person thinks liposuction is the best choice when, in fact, tummy tuck is the best option.

Unfortunately, some unqualified or less experienced surgeons may comply with their patients’ misguided requests rather than take the time to educate the patients about what’s best for their health and their results. Conscientious surgeons must occasionally go a step further by actually turning a patient down if he or she refuses the advice.

Board-certified and highly experienced plastic surgeons are held to certain ethical standards. We have sworn to protect patient health, and we share a goal of providing only the highest level of care. I recommend patients keep this in mind if they are turned down by a surgeon. That may mean it’s time to reconsider some options to find a safe surgical plan that will create a beautiful outcome.

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