The decision to have plastic surgery is a big one. You have undoubtedly done hours of research and spent time looking for the right doctor and educating yourself as much as possible about the cosmetic procedure you are interested in.
Scheduling a plastic surgery consultation is the first concrete step in the process of making your plastic surgery a reality. The consultation is the most critical step for both you and your doctor in ensuring your surgery is feasible, successful and that both parties have a full understanding of each other and the process.
In order to have the best possible outcome, there are a few things you can do to prepare for your plastic surgery consultation.
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Write Down All of Your Questions
At the end of the day, your plastic surgery is a medical procedure. Your consultation is your time to have all your questions answered by a board-certified plastic surgeon. During your research, be sure to write down anything that you may not understand or are curious about.
Your plastic surgeon has heard them all. Never worry about or feel embarrassed to ask about any component of your procedure or your expectations. You should ask questions not only about your procedure but about your surgeon as well.
Some good questions to ask about your surgeon are:
- How many surgeries have you performed? How many times have you performed this particular surgery?
- What are your certifications?
- Where will my surgery take place?
- Will my surgery be at an accredited surgical center or hospital?
- What are the qualifications of the anesthesiologist’s team?
- What is the protocol if an emergency were to occur during my operation?
- Can I see before and after photos of your previous patients?
- Do you have any client testimonials I can read?
Some good questions to ask about your procedure are:
- Am I a good candidate for this surgery? If not, what is specifically holding me back from this procedure?
- What are the benefits of this surgery?
- What risks are involved?
- What steps does this surgery entail?
- How long is recovery, and how much time will I need to take off from work?
- Should I expect a lot of pain or scarring?
Prepare Your Medical History
Your surgeon will ask you about your medical history to determine the risks and your candidacy for the procedure. You will want to write down any medications you take regularly and their doses, as well as any other surgeries or hospitalizations you have had in the past.
Your family’s medical history is also an important factor in determining whether plastic surgery is a safe option for you. Organize as much medical information as you can, including allergies, past complications, and pre-existing conditions.
In some cases, you may be able to fill out your medical history paperwork ahead of your scheduled consultation so that you can be more thorough and more prepared.
Have An Idea Of What Your Surgery Might Cost
Your plastic surgery consultation is when you will be given a complete estimate for your surgery. However, it is important to have a general understanding of what to expect before meeting with your doctor.
Doing your research on pricing can also let you know if you are able to pay for your surgery on your own or if you will be perusing financing. Plastic surgery financing is becoming a popular way for people to cover the expense of their cosmetic procedures. Be sure to mention your financing plans during your consultation.
Going into your consultation with a realistic idea of the cost can also help you determine whether your doctor is offering you a reasonable price for your surgery. You should ask your surgeon for specific details about your estimate and the cost of your surgery.
Be Open and Receptive
Doing your research is a critical part of preparing for your plastic surgery consultation. However, it is important to remember that your surgeon is the expert on the topic. Your goal should be to find a doctor you trust to work with you to meet your goals.
You may find that the surgery you originally thought was best for you might not work. Your surgeon may recommend a different procedure or suggest that address some health issues before proceeding with your plastic surgery.
No matter what, be patient and go to your consultation with an open mind. Your surgery is unique to you, and your surgeon’s job is to help you achieve your goals safely and with the appropriate procedures and care.
Make Mental Notes
Throughout your appointment, be sure to make a note of the environment, how you feel, and you the doctor and their staff interact with you and each other. While the surgeon is the expert on plastic surgery, they are the ones being interviewed.
You have every right to, and in fact, you should consult with more than one doctor performing deciding which surgeon will perform your plastic surgery.
Some things to be aware of or note during your consultation are:
- When you arrive, is the surgeon’s office clean, well-organized, and professional?
- Did the surgeon make you feel welcome and at ease?
- Did the doctor listen to all your concerns and offer constructive feedback?
- Do you feel like the surgeon understands your expectations and your goals?
- Did the doctor inform you of all your available options for reaching your desired result?
- Did the doctor explain how they would tailor the procedure to meet your needs?
- Do you feel like you understand what to expect?
- Do you feel the surgeon provided you with reasonable expectations of your results?
Give Yourself Enough Time
Your plastic surgery consultation is your chance to cover every aspect of your surgery. You want to be able to ask all your questions and discuss your options, your recovery, and your expectations.
You can’t anticipate how long that might take or where your consultation may end up going. When scheduling your plastic surgery expectation, make sure to make your appointment on a day and time that you are not rushed or have other obligations.
This will ensure you are not distracted or anxious and can focus your attention fully on your doctor and your appointment.
Your surgeon will have to examine your areas of concern in detail during your procedure. Before your exam, you will be asked to put on a medical gown.
Wearing loose, comfortable clothing will make it easier to change in and out of the medical gown and help alleviate some stress and anxiety.
Know What to Expect
If you have never had plastic surgery before, the anxiety of not knowing what to expect during a plastic surgery consultation can add to the stress of the experience. You can expect your appointment to follow these steps:
- Check in with the reception staff
- Meet with a nurse or medical assistant
- Meet with your plastic surgeon
- Your surgeon will perform a full exam on your areas of concern
- Meet with a patient coordinator
- Discuss the cost of your surgery and discuss your financing options
- You will either schedule your surgery or be provided with ways to take your next steps.
Once your consultation is complete, please remember that you are not obligated to immediately schedule your surgery, and you may even want to schedule a consultation at another practice. You are in control when your consultation is complete.
How Can Beautifi Help?
The Beautifi team is always here to help when choosing a surgeon or financially planning for a cosmetic procedure. Learn how our process works or fill out an application to start your procedure journey!