Dr. Patti Flint

Not Choosing a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon Could Be the Worst Mistake of Your Life

Hello everyone, Dr. Patti Flint here. I want to talk to you today about something that could truly be one of the worst mistakes of your life—not choosing a board certified plastic surgeon for your cosmetic procedure.

I cannot stress enough the importance of understanding the difference between a board certified plastic surgeon and a certified cosmetic surgeon. Board certified plastic surgeons have gone through rigorous training and education, starting with a medical degree, followed by a three-year surgical residency program, and then at least a three-year cosmetic surgery residency. They must pass a written and oral exam given by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS), and they are required to perform surgeries in an accredited surgery center, have hospital privileges, and keep up with continuing education requirements to maintain their board certification status.

On the other hand, cosmetic surgeons are not held to the same standards. They are not required to have the same level of education, training, or safety requirements as a board certified plastic surgeon. In fact, any physician can do a one-year aesthetic fellowship and be able to call themselves a “certified” cosmetic surgeon. It’s like the difference between a cook and a chef. The gulf of training and expertise is vast and bears itself out in the results.

When considering plastic surgery, you owe it to yourself to do your homework. Ask your potential surgeon about their background and training. Make sure they are board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, and ensure that the surgery you want is one that they have experience performing. Request before and after photos to get an idea of the quality and style of their work. After all, plastic surgery is both art and science.

Another important aspect to consider is who will be administering the anesthesia during your surgery. The safest option is to have an anesthesiologist present in the operating room. Unfortunately, there are plenty of cosmetic surgeons who are providing the anesthesia while they’re doing the operation. As a board certified plastic surgeon, I don’t feel like that’s safe, and I always encourage my patients to ask about this before their surgery.

At the end of the day, choosing a board certified plastic surgeon is crucial to ensuring your safety, getting the best possible results, and avoiding potential complications. Don’t make the mistake of choosing a less qualified surgeon. It could truly be one of the worst mistakes of your life.

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