Key Questions to Ask Your Plastic Surgeon

  1. Is the doctor board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgeons (ABPS)? (Note: There is no Board with the term “cosmetic” in it that is recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS))
  2. Is the surgeon a member of at least the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) and/or ideally the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS)?
  3. Is the surgeon a member of the California Society of Plastic Surgeons (CSPS) or his or her local state plastic surgery society?
  4. Is the majority of the surgeon’s practice devoted to cosmetic (aesthetic) surgery, rather than reconstructive?
  5. What percentage of the doctor’s practice is cosmetic versus reconstructive plastic surgery?
  6. How long has the doctor been performing the procedures you are considering?
  7. Does the doctor have hospital privileges to perform the specific procedures you are considering at a local hospital like Scripps Memorial Hospital – La Jolla?
  8. Is the doctor a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons?
  9. Is the doctor a faculty member of a local medical school?
  10. Is the doctor a member of local, state and national plastic surgery societies?
  11. Has the doctor written books or authored journal articles on cosmetic surgery?
  12. Does the doctor teach other doctors his/her techniques of cosmetic surgery?
  13. Can you receive a copy of the doctor’s professional biography that summarizes his/her training, qualifications and credentials?
  14. Are typical “before and after” photos made available for your viewing?
  15. Does the office provide, at the consultation, an itemized “fee quotation sheet,” listing all proposed services and charges?
  16. Can you speak with a patient who has had surgery performed by this doctor?
  17. If the surgery is to be performed in the outpatient surgery center or an office surgery suite, is the facility Medicare certified, state licensed, or accredited by AAAASF (American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities)?
  18. Is anesthesia administered by an anesthesiologist (physician specialist), or will it be a nurse, a nurse anesthetist, or the surgeon?
  19. Is the outpatient surgical facility located in a medical building?
  20. Is the surgery performed entirely by the surgeon or is part delegated to a surgeon-in-training or associate?
  21. Will the operating surgeon and the operative staff perform all of the post-operative care?
  22. Is the outpatient surgery facility immediately adjacent to a major hospital?
  23. Has the surgeon ever had his/her medical license suspended or revoked, or been placed on probation?
  24. Does the surgeon fully explain the risks and alternatives of the procedures, not only the benefits?

Considering a Mommy Makeover? Click here for some key questions to ask at your Mommy Makeover consultation. 

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