Questions to ask during your consultation - Part One


Questions to Ask During Your Consultation, Part 1

Will I Be Awake or Asleep During Surgery?

Your surgeon will make a recommendation regarding which type of anesthesia is most appropriate in your case. Do not feel self-conscious or embarrassed if you have concerns about anesthesia, discomfort, or awareness during surgery. These are common concerns, and they should be discussed with your surgeon openly.

About How Many of These Procedures Have You Performed in the Past Year?

Depending on the surgeon and the operation, the learning curve will vary dramatically. Some surgeons can execute some operations expertly after having performed only a few. Other surgeons continue to improve and refine their techniques after performing it hundreds of times.

The answer will also vary depending on the popularity of the procedure. For common procedures, you may get a specific answer. If you seek a new procedure, do not expect your surgeon to have extensive experience.

How Do You Avoid the Telltale Signs of Surgery?

A telltale sign is evidence to others that you have had cosmetic surgery. It is an unnatural physical characteristic that can be attributed to nothing else. Telltale signs are different for each procedure. Examples of telltale signs are a tight face following a face-lift, an unnaturally pale complexion after a phenol chemical peel, and a surprised look after a forehead lift. Some are preventable, whereas others are not.

Do You Show Pictures of Others Who Have Had the Same Procedure?

The usefulness of viewing before-and-after photos of others who have had the same procedure is overblown. Your surgeon may not show photographs as a matter of policy. Many surgeons do not, because they have found that photographs nourish inflated expectations. You should respect that policy.

If your surgeon suggests that you review photographs of others, be cautious. You will see the best results, even if they are described as average. This will heighten your expectations. The fact that another person had excellent results is not a guarantee that you will have even good results. Therefore, protect yourself by declining to look at photographs. Ask instead to see your plastic surgeon's worst results. It is unlikely that you will be allowed to see them, but it lets your surgeon know that you understand the issues pertaining to others' photos. (If you do look at your doctor's recommended photos, the results shown will be the best available, and you should seek another surgeon if they appear unsatisfactory.)
Article by
Fresno Plastic Surgeon