Considering aesthetic surgery? You need to do your research and become an informed consumer.

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Whose Hands Do I Choose? (How Do You Choose A Cosmetic Surgeon?) PART 2



Part 2 of 2

Cosmetic surgery has become very popular especially with the baby boomers. It has become more accepted and certainly easier to obtain. With all of this expansion, come more potential problems. Mass advertising and lack of enforceable regulation has led to some irresponsible behavior on the part of some physicians. If you are considering having anything done you need to research and become an informed patient. In my first article dealing with this topic, I addressed checking your physicians' credentials. This article will address other important aspects of your research.

Everyone needs to realize that with all of the success stories that we hear about in the media, there are also horror stories of plastic surgery procedures that went bad. Those we rarely hear about, but they are certainly out there. Even though there might be lots of new and what seem to be, quick fix procedures, all of these procedures have risks! Although cosmetic surgery is elective, remember the decision to have any procedure or surgery is a serious one. Some people spend less time choosing a physician to perform cosmetic surgery than they do shopping for a house or a car. That's scary!

This is your face and body. Cheaper isn't always better. Be careful of advertising. Television and magazine ads are paid for. Many years ago physicians were not allowed to advertise. Boy has that changed. There are still many physicians who are against this and some states have stricter controls than others do. Be wary of promotional deals and impossible claims. Steer away, if you hear risk free and be very cautious if a physician claims to be the authority on a particular procedure or surgery or claims that he is the only one doing it.

Talking to friends and relatives who have had similar procedures and are happy with the results can also be helpful, however get more than one recommendation. Your personal physician can be a good referral and you can call your local well respected hospital to find out whether the surgeon you are interested in has privileges to operate in that facility. When a hospital grants surgical privileges to a physician, the surgeon must divulge to the hospital details of lawsuits or malpractice complaints.

You can contact your state medical board to check whether the physician is licensed and whether there has been any disciplinary actions taken against him. You can check with the clerk of the county or circuit court for medical malpractice suits filed against a physician. There are also web sites for most states that have varying degrees of information regarding past paid malpractice claims on a physician. However, chances are you will not get any information on pending claims.  Getting this information may sound easy, however every state has a different attitude as to whether they want to make this information public. In some states you will have easy access and others minimal access. You can also check the AMA Physician Select web site to see what type of information they have on the physician. They have generic information on all licensed physicians. Today we have many more options than before; we have the internet. Put the doctors name and the word medical malpractice in Google and you may be surprised what shows up.

As presented in part one of this article, you need to take your time, come up with a plan and be disciplined in following it. I hope that the information from these two articles will give you a basic foundation on how to research your physician. Remember that it's important not to have unrealistic expectations and to recognize that cosmetic surgery will not change your life.

To Do Your Research Just Go To:
Researching Your Physician

Questions To Ask When You Go On a Cosmetic Surgery Consultation:
Cosmetic Surgery Consultation

To go back to Part 1 of this article:
Click Here

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