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How To Find and Choose a Great Plastic Surgeon

By Dr. Michael Newman
Posted On Aug 31, 2021
How To Find and Choose a Great Plastic Surgeon

Have you been considering plastic surgery for years?  Maybe that breast augmentation you have thought about since high school?  Or maybe you have some stubborn areas of fat after having kids or getting older?  Or maybe your neck is starting to look more like your parents’ neck rather than yours?  The best first step is to see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon so you can figure out your options.

Why is Board Certification so important?  Board Certified Plastic Surgeons undergo the most rigorous training including several years of experience in numerous surgical subspecialties followed by dedicated training in plastic surgery of the face and body for at least three years, totaling at least six years of training after medical school.  Many plastic surgeons opt to go on for further fellowship training as well.  That is followed by an intense examination process including a written examination, an oral examination, and a review of one year of surgical cases by the Board of Examiners who vote as a group on whether to approve the candidate for Board Certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

It is important to note that being Board Certified isn’t specific to Plastic Surgery.  There is a Board Certification process for many other specialties also such as Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, General Surgery, and OB/GYN.  So it is important to be sure that your surgeon is Board Certified in Plastic Surgery specifically.  Also, be forewarned that there is a Cosmetic Board of Plastic Surgery with a much less rigorous training requirement so be sure to get the details.  It is also important to be aware that there is a well respected Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive surgery for those trained in Head and Neck Surgery (also known as Otolaryngology) that continue on to a one year fellowship in plastic surgery limited to the face.

The American Board of Medical Specialties is a governing body that recognizes and regulates the most respected Boards for each medical specialty, including the American Board of Plastic Surgery.  To find out if your surgeon is Board Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, go to www.abplasticsurgery.org, then click on the tab labeled “Public”, then select “Verify Certification”.  You can also find the same information on the American Board of Medical Specialties certification website www.certificationmatters.org and selecting “Is My Doctor Board Certified”.

During your consultation, be sure to express your goals and be open to feedback from your doctor.  A Board Certified Plastic Surgeon will go over your options with you and help you select the best one.  Don’t feel like you need to know all the answers before you get there.  On the contrary, you are coming in to the office for some guidance and advice.  Your doctor will help you decide on the best next steps to get to the results you are looking for!

Many people ask about whether they should go to multiple consultations before going forward with surgery.  Certainly it is reasonable to get multiple opinions, but the process can be time consuming and expensive.  If your first consultation doesn’t go the way you expected, it is a good idea to see another doctor to make sure you aren’t being misunderstood or misled.  However, if your first consultation goes great and you did your homework on looking up his or her credentials, then there is no need to double check by seeing someone else unless you want to.

Dr. Michael Newman

The bottom line is do your homework!  Plastic surgery is a big step and you are putting your life in someone else’s hands so be sure to make an informed decision.  This is not the time to rush into something, cut corners, or search for the cheapest price.  Going the wrong doctor could end up being a life or death decision.

For more information on Dr. Newman please visit www.drnewmanbeverlyhills.com