Thursday, February 07, 2008

Top Ten Tough Questions before Plastic Surgery

adamci photo

Before any cosmetic plastic surgery procedure, make sure you are in the hands of a capable surgeon. To be positive your surgeon knows his or her stuff, here are ten tough questions to ask.

1. Doctor, do you do this procedure regularly?

If you want rhinoplasty, (nose surgery) choose a surgeon who does it two or three times weekly. Super specialists save time, money and discomfort in the long run.

2. Is your board certification in the specialty in which you now practice?

Get straight answers. If your surgeon is board certified in gynecology but offers to lift your eyelids or your forehead, don’t you have things backwards?

3. Doctor, do you have any health problems that may interfere with your proficiency in doing the procedure?

If the doctor has a hook on his left arm where a hand used to be, you might want to think about having surgery there. Likewise, if the doctor is using Braille to read, maybe shop around a little.

4. What is your rate of positive outcomes and safety record, doctor? How did you handle your last complication?

Watch for an honest answer. No plastic surgery procedure turns out perfectly each and every time. In rhinoplasty, about five percent of operations go south even in the best of hands for reasons that have nothing to do with the doctor’s skill.

5. Will I be involved in marking the surgical site?

A plastic or cosmetic surgeon marks your body or face with surgical ink before the procedure. It shows him or her where to operate once you are prone and covered. Ask to go over the markings while you’re awake and alert.

6. After the procedure, ask: Did anything unexpected happen during the operation, doctor?

Ninety nine times out of 100 everything goes smoothly --
provided you’ve done your homework and selected a capable,
trained surgeon. (Read more on how to select a qualified plastic surgeon in the first place.)

7. Anything different about my post-op care?

You may need to baby yourself a little more afterwards because every patient is different. Some are good to go sooner; others should take it easy a few more days.

8. Did anything happen that could complicate my recovery?

A trained, experienced plastic surgeon will have a good idea when those bruises and swelling, if any, will go away and when you can go back to work and start exercising again.

9. Anything special I need to know in case of bleeding or other post-op complications?

10. When am I supposed to see you next, doctor?

Most surgeons want to take a quick look at your surgical site(s) and general health the very next day. After that, you’ll usually get another follow-up visit soon to remove bandages or stitches. Depending on the procedure, your after pictures could be taken two months after surgery.

What tough question would you ask a plastic surgeon? Before and after the operation?

No comments: