Tips in Selecting a Qualified Plastic Surgeon


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Plastic surgery is becoming increasingly common among more men and women each year. Selecting a qualified plastic surgeon should be done in the exact same manner a surgeon would handle medical instruments: very carefully.

“One of the worst things a cosmetic surgery patient can do is select a plastic surgeon who lacks the knowledge or experience to provide the results the patient is looking for, ” says Dr. Mack Sullivan, a board certified plastic surgeon from The Centre, P. Elkhart, Indiana.

With advances in plastic surgery techniques and the increased demand for cosmetic surgery, it is important to know how to identify highly skilled and highly qualified plastic surgeons. The most important factor in the surgery’s success is the surgeon you choose. Some suggestions for making an informed decision include:

§ Find references. Consult some friends who’ve had a comparable procedure. Evaluate their experience with the surgeon. Each patient is unique. Likewise, each surgery is unique and results cannot be generalized. For a medical opinion, ask your family physician to recommend one or more qualified plastic surgeons. Calling a respected hospital in your community could not only give you additional names, but assure you that even if the surgeon has their own surgical facility, he or she maintains privileges at that specific hospital.

§ Do some homework. After gathering a list of plastic surgeons, begin to check their credentials. The physicians recommended to you might all be plastic surgeons, but knowing which certifications are more rigorous for a surgeon to attain could narrow your selection to include names of only the highest qualified. Although a physician’s academic schooling is important, in your research it is more important to look for the type of training they received. If the surgeon has completed an accredited residency program in plastic surgery, then the surgeon received two or three years of intensive training in the full spectrum of both cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery.

§ Board certification. A plastic surgeon can obtain board certification from a number of medical societies. It is imperative to know which board certifying societies to look for. A board certification from the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) is the most prestigious certification a plastic surgeon can achieve. To be eligible for certification by the ABPS, plastic surgeons not only need to graduate from an accredited medical school but complete at least five years of additional residency. To be certified, a physician must also practice plastic surgery for two years and pass comprehensive written and oral exams. Obtaining certification through some alternative boards may only require a monetary fee.

§ During the consultation. Bring any prewritten questions you may have regarding the procedure to your consultation. Discuss any pros or cons with the surgeon and prior successes and obstacles they experienced as a result of the surgery. Ask the doctor about his or her capabilities performing the procedure. Look through Befores and Afters with the surgeon during your consultation. Do not feel uncomfortable to verbally ask the surgeon of their qualifications and training as a plastic surgeon. You should get to know your plastic surgeon.

The plastic surgeons at The Centre, P.C.are all board certified by the ABPS and maintain privileges at each hospital in the Michiana area . If you are interested in receiving more information on The Centre, P. C. ’s plastic surgeons credentials and experience, contact The Centre, P. C. or schedule a complimentary cosmetic surgery consultation by calling (574) 296-9100.


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