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Questions You Should Ask Your Plastic Surgeon

If you are considering any plastic surgery, you should always be prepared before visiting.  There are important questions that you should ask your plastic surgeon, so that you can be sure you have made the proper decision and know what to expect about the procedure and recovery.  These questions from the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery will help you make a smarter decision.

Are you board certified?

You should always make sure that your plastic surgeon is board certified in cosmetic surgery.  The reason for this is because any licensed physician can legally perform any cosmetic procedure, whether they have had training or not.  To ensure that you have a qualified physician, check to make sure they are board certified because that means they have had proper training, experience and have a specialty of cosmetic surgery.  It also means that they completed at least 12 months of AACS training.    This also ensures that they are working in a fully accredited, state licensed surgical facility.

What kind of training do you have?

Always ask your board certified physician about specific training and experience that they have.  Make sure they had comprehensive cosmetic surgery training.

How often do you perform my type of procedure?

If you are going for a certain procedure, or procedures, make sure to find out how often the plastic surgeon performs that type  of procedure and how experienced he is in performing it.   You may even ask to see before and after photos.   This can help you make a better decision.

What type of anesthesia will you use?

Ask about the types of anesthesia that are available to you, who will be administering it and make sure they too are a board certified physician anesthesiologist or certified registered nurse anesthetist.  You want to be sure you are being properly monitored by a qualified professional.  Board certified cosmetic surgeons only work with these types of anesthesiologists and in accredited surgical facilities.

How will my recovery be?

Knowing how extensive your recovery will be, will let you know if this is the proper time to receive the procedure.  You should also ask how much work time, normal activity time, etc. you will lose.  Your recovery period may have you needing assistance in child care, and you may lose time at the gym and other activities you do on a daily basis.  Depending on how extensive your procedure is, can determine how much time you will need.  Ask about restrictions, limitations, and recovery time.  Be sure to discuss any concerns or anything that makes your feel uncomfortable or confused.  You can also ask about alternative procedure types at this time if you feel the current recovery time for the type of procedure being discussed doesn't fit into your time schedule.

How much will this cost?

You should know about all fees and costs before agreeing to any procedure.  This includes any consultation fees.   Many plastic surgeons will give you a free consultation, however, some may not.  You should know this and the cost of every procedure and fee you will be paying because this is an elective surgery and you will be responsible for all of the fees, operating room costs, anesthesia and anything else.   If you are not sure what you should be paying, or  about how much the costs should be, you can check a pricing calculator from the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery for the range of price.  You can ask for a fee quote and how long the quote is good for.  However, do not base your decision on price.  When you are having a plastic surgery procedure you do not want corners cut.  Make sure to ask what is included in the price, especially in the operating room. You want an adequate support staff on duty in case of an emergency.

Ask about financing

If you can not afford the procedure you want or need, ask about financing options.  Can you make monthly payments?  There should be someone who specializes in patient financing on staff that can answer all of your questions and concerns.

Other questions

The American Board of Cosmetic Surgeons website has a consultation checklist that you can print out and bring wit you to your consultation.  They also have a website that can help you find a board certified cosmetic surgeon near you.  You may also check American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery website.

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  1. It's surprising how often I forget things I want to ask my doctor. I think you should make a list and take it with you when you see a doctor, especially one whose work could impact the way you look.

  2. These are basically the same things I would ask if I had any type of surgery. I have to admit that I never wanted to have plastic surgery unless I was in a bad accident and my face needed it! Plus the question about how much the surgery is going to cost, would be my first question!

  3. I have never considered any type of plastic surgery but you bring up great points. Cost would certainly be at the top of my list for any surgery!


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