If you are consider getting plastic surgery for your health needs, a professional’s opinion can help. Here are plastic surgery questions to ask your doctor.
It doesn’t matter who you are or where you’re from. We all want to feel confident in the way we look and we don’t want to spend hours in front of a makeup mirror to make that happen. For 1.8 million Americans last year alone, that was motivation enough to get plastic surgery.
The first step in most plastic surgery journeys is a consultation with the surgeon. To make the most of that opportunity, ask your surgeon these plastic surgery questions.
1. What Is the Best Surgery for the Results I Want?
Many people make the mistake of trying to decide on a cosmetic surgery on their own. The problem is that there are certain surgeries that can have similar effects but it isn’t easy for the average person to tell the difference. You might know a tummy tuck and liposuction both slim your midsection, but what’s the difference between them?
A better strategy is to simply go to your surgeon and explain what you want to change about your appearance. Then ask them what surgery or combination of procedures can accomplish your goals.
2. How Much Experience Do You Have with This Procedure?
After you know what surgery you need, make sure your surgeon has extensive experience. All plastic surgeons may be able to perform most cosmetic surgeries, but the more specialized experience your surgeon has, the more skill they’ll have.
Most plastic surgeons specialize in a few particular surgeries. They might also specialize in a particular area of the body, like the face or the midsection. Regardless, make sure your surgeon performs procedures like yours on a regular basis.
3. What Can I Expect During My Recovery Time?
The recovery period makes many people nervous because they worry that it will be days or weeks or excruciating pain. In most cases, the recovery is far easier than patients expect.
To prepare yourself in advance, ask your surgeon to walk through what you can expect during your recovery. What symptoms will you have, like swelling and bruising? How long before you can go back to work or get back to the gym?
Remember that the recovery varies from person to person based on your body’s healing process. Still, your surgeon should be able to give you a general idea.
4. What Scarring Can I Expect After the Surgery?
All surgeries will leave a scar. This is the basic exchange of plastic surgery: you improve a certain aspect of your appearance but you’re left with a scar. Some surgeries like rhinoplasty leave scars that are entirely hidden while others have more visible scarring.
This is the choice you need to make: is the expected scarring minimal enough to make it a good exchange in your opinion? Talk to your surgeon about the scars you can expect and how visible they would be.
5. What Is the Cost Breakdown and Total Cost of This Procedure?
It’s difficult to know exactly how much cosmetic surgery will cost before your consultation. Rather than a single price, there are several costs involved in your surgery.
In most cases, you’ll have a surgeon’s fee, an anesthesia fee, and an operating room fee. When you see plastic surgery prices advertised, they often only include the surgeon’s fee. During your consultation, get a clear breakdown of the costs involved.
Don’t forget to add in other expected costs. This could include medications, pre-surgery bloodwork, support garments, and more.
6. What Are Your Financing Options?
Speaking of costs, make sure you know how you’ll be able to pay for your surgery. Ask your surgeon for all the options they offer so you can evaluate each one.
Most surgeons will have financing options, like credit cards or lines of credit that are meant for medical procedures. If your credit isn’t strong, you can also look for a medical loan as an option for plastic surgery with bad credit.
7. Can I See Your Patients’ Before and After Photos
You could browse plastic surgery before and after photos all day long online. What you really need to see are the photos from your surgeon’s work. An experienced surgeon should have a robust collection of patient photos.
As you look through pictures from the surgery you’re having, look for patients who looked similar to you in their “before” pictures. You can’t guarantee you’ll have the same result as them, but it gives you a good idea of what to expect.
Feel free to use these pictures to discuss the details of your surgery.
8. What Can I Expect on the Day of the Surgery?
Surgery day is intimidating for many people, and understandably. To calm your nerves and help you know what to expect, ask your surgeon to walk you through the day of the surgery.
What time should you arrive and where? What will happen next? When will your surgery begin and when will it end? When can you expect to be back at home, resting?
This helps you prepare in advance and takes away some of the anxiety before surgery. Since you’ll need someone to drive you home, it’s also helpful to be able to give them an idea of what to expect.
9. Can I Speak with Previous Patients?
Before and after pictures tell you results but they don’t tell you about a patient’s experience. For that, you need to hear from the patients themselves.
Ask your surgeon if they have references you can speak with: past patients who have had the surgery you’re considering. This gives you a chance to ask them about any part of the procedure you want, patient to patient.
Plastic Surgery Questions to Make the Most Out of Your Consultation
Your consultation is an opportunity to set yourself up for a more successful cosmetic surgery experience. The plastic surgery questions above can help you make the most of that opportunity and get an idea of what to expect.
For more tips on plastic surgery any other health and wellness topics, check out more articles on our blog.