If you have been thinking of having cosmetic surgery for some time now and have been doing your research on Google, not all of which is accurate or as per your requirements, the best way to get your queries answered is to book a consultation with a surgeon.
Now comes the next big question, can you really ask all the questions you have been googling to a surgeon. Yes, of course you can.
Here’s a list of top ten question you must ask a cosmetic surgeon, plus feel free to ask anything that comes to mind. We speak with experts and they welcome all sorts of questions regardless.
To start a conversation, you can look into what cosmetic surgeons have suggested are the top priority questions to ask them:
Are You Board Certified?
Any qualified licenced surgeon can legally perform the surgery, however if a surgeon is a board certified one, it ensures that they have undergone an extensive training of minimum six to nine years to be on board.
Dr Punam Jawahar Bijlani, Consultant Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon at Mediclinic Dubai Mall says, “A great place to start your cosmetic surgery journey is by visiting the member directory of various boards such as ISAPS, ASPS etc, and scheduling a consult with a board certified plastic surgeon.”
Dr Sabet Salahia, Specialist Plastic Surgeon at CosmeSurge says, “It is important that the surgeon you seek treatment from is certified and is an ethical and responsible individual with extensive knowledge and experience in the concerned area of surgery.”
How Frequently Do You Perform The Procedure You Want?
It is common for cosmetic surgeons to specialise in certain areas. Choosing a cosmetic surgeon who performs surgeries that you are interested in is more likely to get you better results.
Dr Kevin Brenner, MD FACS, at American British Surgical and Medical Centre says, “Not all plastic surgeons are comfortable performing, or routinely perform, revision surgery. Do you regularly perform revision breast and nose surgery in your practice?”
What Type of Anaesthesia Will Be Used During The Procedure?
Anaesthesia procedures do have side-effects of their own. There are two types of anaesthesia - local and general. Local anaesthesia is required for less complex procedures and has shorter initial recovery, and general anaesthesia is usually necessary for more complex procedures, such as abdominoplasty, a full facelift. No matter what type of anaesthesia a cosmetic surgeon recommends, be sure to ask your potential surgeon who will be administering your anaesthesia. This person should be a board certified physician. Having a dedicated anaesthesiology team ensures you have qualified professionals monitoring you throughout your procedure and allows the cosmetic surgeon to focus on achieving your desired outcome.
What Are The Real Expectations After Surgery?
This is a very crucial discussion. Cosmetic surgery can change the way you look but it cannot change the way you feel or alter your life to a greater extent. It is better to set the right expectations of what outcome you desire and discuss it with your potential surgeon.
“Sometimes people might want to have cosmetic surgery to solve life problems, or during disruptive times in their lives when they feel bad about themselves - for example, during divorce. So, any discussion with a plastic surgeon should always include consideration of any existing health conditions you might have, your lifestyle, pros and cons of surgery, risks and complications and your expectations concerning the outcome of the surgery”, adds Dr Kevin Brenner, MD FACS, at American British Surgical and Medical Centre.
What Alternative Treatments Are Available?
Cosmetic surgery provides several alternatives to treat a particular condition. You should be aware of the area that requires treatment and discuss with the concerned surgeon regarding the available options.
Dr Sabet Salahia, at CosmeSurge says, “In some cases surgery is recommended, several others issues can be resolved with minor surgery and in some instances by also using non-invasive techniques. I believe beauty is objective and every patient should know what they want and then seek help from an experienced surgeon.”
What Are The Risks Or The Possible Complications Associated With The Procedure?
You should have a detailed knowledge about the complications and risks involved with a procedure. “While rashes and inflammation are common problems associated with cosmetic treatments, the most serious complications of surgery usually have to do with excessive blood loss, infection, or adverse reactions to general anaesthesia. These can be fatal in some cases”, adds Dr Sabet Salahia of CosmeSurge.
What Are The Breakdown Of Costs?
A cosmetic procedure does not only involve the surgeon’s costs, but the total fee for any surgical procedure will include surgeon’s fees, anaesthesia, operating room expenses, and any materials involved. Ask about the total cost breakdown in advance to save yourself from a surprise bill.
“Some people don’t realise that there are additional costs besides the surgeon’s fee. These include anaesthesia fees, operating room fees, lab fees and many others that contribute to the total cost. Hence, I urge everyone to get the right breakdown from the hospital administration to avoid any setbacks at the end”, suggests Dr Sabet Salahia of CosmeSurge.
What Is The Expected Recovery Period?
Ask this question to understand the total time you are expected to have before you go back to your daily routine. Ask the cosmetic surgeon how much time you can expect to take away from your normal activities, including work, childcare, and exercise. Also, confirm if there are any restrictions on any physical activities post-surgery such as avoiding lifting heavy weights or exercising.
What Is The Right Age To Undergo Treatment?
Most plastic surgeries are performed best once the body has reached the adult size, however there are exceptions when a cosmetic procedure can be performed on children, but parental consent is required for patients under the age of 18.
Dr Allen Rezai of Elite Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery Group says, “Cosmetic surgery is certainly not for everyone. I strongly believe that no person under the age of 18 should undergo cosmetic surgery, as they may have not yet reached their physical and emotional maturity and may not know their expectations and reasons for wanting surgery. Many times, I even advise my 18 year old patients to wait until the age of 20 or 21 before considering any cosmetic surgery.”
He adds, “However, sometimes, surgery at young age can be necessary if it is medically indicated or it is to improve the quality of life for a child or an adolescent, by correcting a defect or an abnormality. In my practice, Otoplasty (ear reshaping) is the only cosmetic surgery procedure that I consider appropriate for children and teenagers. And this is to prevent them from being bullied and teased at school due to their protruding ears.”
A Final Question To Ask Your Surgeon
“Finally, there’s one great question that you should always ask (in any situation where you’re talking to an expert): Is there anything I haven’t asked about, that you think I should know? This last question in particular, will help you get the answers you need that are specific to you, as a unique patient”, suggests Dr Punam Jawahar Bijlani, of Mediclinic Dubai Mall.
The list above covers a lot, however you should always feel free to ask any and every question you can think of. Don’t hesitate to ask any question that crosses your mind. If there’s a question that you realise later you wish you’d asked, call the surgeon back. That way, you’ll be well-equipped to understand all of your plastic surgery options, and everything that’s involved.