Dr. Mark Zukowski Looks at How to Choose a Plastic Surgeon Who is Best for You
If you have decided to get plastic surgery — or you are seriously considering this option to restore functionality to a part of your body or to improve your appearance and self-confidence — then it’s vital to choose a plastic surgeon who is best for you. To help you make this decision, here are some key tips to keep in mind according to Dr. Mark Zukowski of Wilmette, Illinois, who has been practicing plastic surgery for more than three decades:
Verify that a Plastic Surgeon is Board Certified
Plastic surgeons who are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) must meet rigorous training and experience requirements, including: obtaining a medical degree from an accredited medical school, completing three years of general surgery, completing a two or three year residency program in plastic surgery, completing at least two years of post-residency professional practice, and successfully passing multiple exams (both oral and written) that are administrated by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
Dr. Mark Zukowski explains that board certified plastic surgeons continuously improve their knowledge and practice in order to obtain re-certification every 10 years.
Assess a Plastic Surgeon’s Experience
It is also important to assess a plastic surgeon’s experience and areas of expertise, as they relate to the specific surgery you are interested in (or that related to your specific goals, if you are not yet familiar with the surgical options available). Typically, you can find this information on a plastic surgeon’s practice website, and during your consultation.
As the old and wise saying goes, there is no substitute for experience. Dr. Mark Zukowski notes that you want to choose a plastic surgeon who has not only performed the surgery that you need or want for many years, but who also performs it regularly instead of occasionally.
Look at Before-and-After Photos
Before moving ahead, it is necessary and appropriate to highlight that no two patients are precisely alike, and plastic surgery is both a science and an art. Yet, you can get a solid, realistic understanding of a plastic surgeon’s proficiency and skill level by looking at before-and-after photos. Often, these photos are available on a practice’s website (and more are typically available during a private and confidential consultation).
If you wish, a prospective plastic surgeon should also facilitate your direct communication with a former patient who has agreed to provide feedback. This will allow you to ask specific questions about their process, results, and overall experience.
The Bottom Line
Choosing the right plastic surgeon is a critically important decision. You want to find a health care partner who is skilled, experienced, and professional, as well as caring, respectful, and focused on what matters most: your health and happiness.
Dr Mark Zukowski concludes with some advice: don’t be afraid to ask tough questions, and never feel pressured to make a decision on who to choose or what to do. Qualified and patient-centric plastic surgeons will welcome the opportunity to provide you with accurate information. They will empower you to do what’s truly best for you — not for them or anyone else.