I can't afford a full-price facelift, but I am 47 and have premature jowls. I really want a facelift, but I am very low-income and will never be able to afford a full price one. Is there a residency program where I can have a resident operate on me at UCSF (San Francisco) for cheaper? I understand there is one at UCLA and it seems very affordable. Please advise me. Thanks,
Is There a Residency Program at UCSF (San Francisco) for Facelifts?
Doctor Answers 9
Getting surgery by a resident
Having done surgery as a resident and seeing where my skills are years later makes me realize the important of experience! You can have the surgery done in a residency program, and I am sure the resident will be happy to take care of you. This is a fine option for some, but make sure you are comfortable with the resident and find out if there will be supervision during the procedure.
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Seek An Expert for Your Facelift
Cosmetic surgery takes years of practice to be able to perform well, and facelifting tops the list. There are many nuances and subtleties to the facelift operation that are required to have a good outcome. Be very careful if you are seeking surgery on your face with someone other than a full fledged and seasoned expert. There are very real risks and the stakes are high... its your face. You might end up looking distorted, funny, or worse- you might have a facial nerve injury that paralyzes part of your face. My advice? Find a provider that is well recommended who isn't the most expensive (maybe drive to a more rural area), spell out your financial concerns openly (to the Doctor directly, if possible), and see what the practice can do for you. Make sure the practice participates in Care Credit for financing options, or have some other favorable payment plan. Better this than risk having a complication with a trainee surgeon that will likely cost even more $$ to remedy. Good luck! -Dr. Capone
Facelift in Residency Program
Although we all face financial realities, at the end you want to have a great outcome after facelift surgery. It is your face after all, so just having done surgery by a surgeon in training is not enough.
So, while searching for the appropriate program, it is the surgeon who will ultimately provide you with the results, good or bad. Be sure to inquire how many facelifts the surgeon has performed in the past. You may find even a fellowship program where the surgical fellow sub-specializes in facial cosmetic surgery. So, spend some time in your research before undergoing something as important as a facelift.
I wish you best of luck!
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Depending upon what you need, you may be able to find a plastic surgeon with very reasonable prices on a facelift. In addition, some residents or fellows by the end of their training have done dozens of facelifts. Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA
Unequal results from a resident clinic
Any practicing surgeon would tell you that there will not be any where near the same result if you go to a resident trainee clinic. In addition, your risk of complications like nerve damage is higher because of the inexperience of the surgeons. It's probably okay to have a breast aug or tummy tuck done like this, but please don't risk your face. Better to do your research and save up for an experienced practicing surgeon.
Facelifts by trainees in San Francisco
In addition to UCSF, there are a number of fellowship programs in the Bay Area. Some may offer discounted facelift procedures if done by the fellow . Most plastic and facial plastic fellows have completed a residency and are having further supervised experience.
Is it wise to have a facelift performed by a trainee to save money?
There are options available to have facial aesthetic surgery performed by trainees at a lower price. There are also board certified surgeons who offer cheap facial plastic surgery. In both cases, there is a reason why the procedure is cheaper and that is typically a lack of experience. If you choose to have surgery by a resident or fellow, the question you need to ask is who will be supervising the surgery and is it worth the risk? An "affordable" plastic surgery can become very expensive if you need a revision procedure down the line. I hope this information is helpful.
Stephen Weber MD, FACS
Weber Facial Plastic Surgery
UCSF Resident Cosmetics
There is a Resident Cosmetic Clinic at UC San Francisco. Please contact the Division of Plastic Surgery at UCSF for more information.
Larry Fan, MD
Residency programs at UCSF for facelifts
There are two possibilities at UCSF I can think of that may offer a facelift by a resident at a discounted price. You could try contacting the Department of Plastic Surgery and also the Department of Head and Neck Surgery, which has a facial plastic surgery division. The phone # for the plastic surgery department is 415-353-4201. The phone # for the facial plastic surgery department is 415-353-9500.