1. You want a plastic surgeon – not a doctor professing to be one – but a real one. You want a doctor who is legally recognized as an expert, who has successfully completed the rigorous training and testing process required to receive the honor of being called a board certified plastic surgeon. The internationally recognized institution for board certification – The American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) is the only name you need to know. But write it down and be on your guard – similar appearing or similar sounding “credentials” may be thrown your way. Remember: ABPS certified. Listed below are my personal recommendations of the most reliable and useful website resources for easily finding, locating and getting some preliminary information on the ABPS certified plastic surgeons in your area.
2. Make a list – contact information and websites – of at least ten prospective plastic surgeons – more if you have the energy! And now it’s “internet research” time. The doctors’ websites should create an impression, one way or another, and should begin to give you a general feeling of whether you would want to go for a visit. Check into the site content, before and after photos, etc. regarding the procedures or areas of the body you are interested in. What does it seem like they emphasize? Practices rarely highlight/spotlight the things that they rarely do. Comparing the websites can also reveal differences in style, experience, and focus. Trim your list down accordingly. “Rating” and review sites may not be so great – the “information” appearing there is often biased and can be of questionable legitimacy. If you look any of these “reviews” over, take time to read them carefully and thoroughly and try to form your opinion accordingly. Often you will find that there is actually more value to what is written “between the lines”.
3. Schedule appointments with at least three of the plastic surgeons from your list – which should be a bit shorter after completing step 2 above! The scheduling experience itself should be a positive one or you can trim the list further. A good practice provides for a good experience from beginning to end – that includes your first phone call and scheduling. During your office visit, from the moment you arrive, you should start to get an impression. Does this seem like the place and doctor I want to go to? Have they impressed me with their professionalism and courtesy? Any “bad vibes”? Don’t go forward with your plans with any doctor (no matter what the other positives might be) if you have any “bad vibes”. Contrast and compare your visits and trim the list again. Hopefully, you’ve ended up with at least one doctor who could be the right one for you. Even so, you should go back for a second consult. They never select the high-end executives for the big job with just one interview, why should you? The job you’re hiring for is even more important! Good luck!
Dr. Back’s Recommended Website Resources for locating ABPS certified plastic surgeons:
Dr. Lyle Back is originally from New York City, receiving his medical and surgical training at Rutgers Medical School, Cooper Hospital – University Medical Center, and Ohio State. He is Board Certified in General Surgery (ABS) and Plastic Surgery (ABPS). He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons (ACS), the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery (AACS), and a longstanding member of the premier American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). He specializes in the full range of the most modern and state of the art cosmetic surgery procedures for the body and non-surgical cosmetic enhancement techniques available today.