Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon

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Questions to Ask Your Doctor

Questions to Ask Your Doctor

1. Are you a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon?

A Board Certified Plastic Surgeon is required to undergo rigorous training in aesthetic surgery and general surgery designed to ensure that your surgeon is qualified to perform your surgery safely and effectively. If your surgeon is not Board Certified in Plastic Surgery, this means that s/he did not participate in years of training as a resident at an accredited hospital to learn under the guidance and expertise of experienced Plastic Surgeons. A Board Certified Plastic Surgeon is also required to pass a 2 day written examination. Then s/he must collect and present 100s of surgical cases to a panel of examiners for a 2 day oral examination. Therefore, it takes a Plastic Surgeon a minimum of 6 years and even up to even 12 years for a surgeon to become a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.

One of the most important things a patient needs to know in choosing a surgeon is that there is an enormous difference between a Plastic Surgeon and a Cosmetic Surgeon. A Cosmetic Surgeon is not required to undergo residency training for plastic and/or cosmetic surgery procedures under the tutelage of experienced surgeons.

In the state of Georgia, there is only one requirement for a doctor to perform surgical procedures and/or call him/herself a surgeon – the doctor must have graduated from medical school. This means that a doctor is legally permitted to perform a surgical operation without having had any experience whatsoever in the surgical procedure that s/he wants to perform. It is therefore extremely important for patients who are interested in having a cosmetic procedure performed, that they choose a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.

2. Do you have privileges at a nearby hospital?

If your surgeon does not have privileges at a nearby hospital, then they cannot admit you as a patient to a hospital in case of an emergency.

3. Assuming that the doctor has privileges at a nearby hospital, does the doctor have privileges to perform the surgical procedure that you are having at that hospital?

If your surgeon does not have privileges at a nearby hospital to perform the procedure that you are having done, then that physician is most likely not a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.

4. How many years have you been performing this specific procedure in private practice?

5. How many of this specific procedure have you performed in the last year? Per week?

6. Does the doctor has his/her own surgery center?

You need to ask the doctor if the center is accredited by JCAHO or AAAHC. These two organizations require strict adherence to safety regulations which will help to ensure that your surgery is clean and safe.

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