Deciding to have a face lift often takes a lot of time and consideration. But however long it takes to come to this decision, you should take twice as long to decide on a face lift surgeon.
It is extremely important to make an informed decision regarding a face lift doctor. Prior to going under the knife, you should first do your research regarding the actual procedure, recovery time, and preparations.
While doing this, make a list of questions that you want to ask your doctor and don’t be afraid to ask a lot of them. Narrow your search down to a few different facelift surgeons.
Of these surgeons, try to determine which of them have received board certification and what specific boards they are certified by.
Unfortunately, this can be a little confusing because there are so many various boards and certifications that face lift surgeons can obtain.
What is Board Certification?
Board certification is defined as a process of written and/or practical knowledge, by a doctor, to test and prove that he or she possesses a high level of expertise in a specific field or area of medicine.
For example, a doctor can become a board certified face lift surgeon. However, as mentioned above, this can be rather complicated due to the enormous amount of certifying organizations.
Below are the top three certifying organizations that a face lift doctor should be certified with.
- American Medical Association (AMA) – Established in 1847, the AMA is the leader in board certification.
- The American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) – Founded in 1937 this organization is the leader in board certification for all plastic surgeons.
- The American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ABFPRS) – In existence since 1986, this certifying board is responsible for ensuring that all plastic surgeons that practice facial procedures adhere to the strictest guidelines.
Any face lift doctor that you are considering should be certified by all three of these organizations at a minimum. This list is by no means comprehensive but is a good starting point.
Facelift surgeons could be certified by every single organization available but this doesn’t ensure that they are the best surgeon.
Therefore, it is important to ask a lot of questions before committing to a specific doctor. The top 10 questions you should ask your doctor are:
- Are you board certified? If so, what organizations are you certified with and how long have you been a member?
- How many times have you performed this procedure?
- Where will the procedure be performed? If at a hospital, it is a good idea to ask what hospitals they have privileges at?
- What other staff members will be assisting you during this procedure? Don’t be afraid to ask to meet them as well.
- What are the risks associated with this procedure?
- May I see several before and after photos of previous patients who have had this procedure?
- Could you provide me with a list of 5 or 6 references? Preferably prior patients.
- Have you had any prior complications with this procedure? If so, what is your complication rate? Success rate?
- What is the exact breakdown of fees for this procedure?
- What type of anesthesia will be used? You should also ask to have a consultation with the anesthesiologist prior to surgery.
This list is just a guideline. Don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as you want until you feel comfortable.
If the surgeon refuses to answer your questions or doesn’t answer them to your satisfaction then it is time to find a new facelift surgeon.
It can be overwhelming for a first time patient to know exactly where to start looking for a face lift doctor. The best place to start is with your primary care doctor.
Also, ask friends and family members for referrals. Another great avenue is to visit the websites of the certifying boards mentioned above.
Many of them have tools set up to search for certified face lift surgeons in your specific area.
Finally, schedule an initial consultation with each and every surgeon you are considering.