3 Magic Questions to Ask to Instantly Reveal If You’ve Found the Right Doctor: Interview With Dr. Rod Rohrich

Chako S. on 9 Jun 2014 at 4:15pm

Navigate Your Beauty: Smart and Safe Plastic Surgery Solutions is co-authored by Dr. Rod Rohrich

Shopping for cosmetic surgery requires a different kind of savvy. It’s not quite the same as hunting down a pair of stilettos or a new designer bag, and it’s one area where bargain hunting is probably the worst route you can take. You’re plunking down a substantial amount of money on something that’s likely going to change your life after all — and hopefully for the better.

The glut of billboards, ads, and doctor websites can make it seem like a sexy, new you is just a phone call (and a few thousand dollars) away. With all the glossy advertising going on around you, how do you avoid getting fooled? We checked in with Dr. Rod Rohrich, Dallas board-certified surgeon and co-author of the new book Navigate Your Beauty: Smart and Safe Plastic Surgery Solutions (Amazon.com, $23).

Dr. Rohrich’s guide leads consumers like you through the glitz and glam of marketing to finding a true expert. The premise of the book is built around a set of questions that every consumer considering plastic surgery should ask potential doctors. These “Three Magic Questions” help to determine a doctor’s experience, expertise, and results (in that order). They are:

  • Is this one of the top three surgeries you perform and how often do you do it?
  • Do you teach, speak, or write about this procedure for the benefit of other plastic surgeons?
  • Do you have long-term follow up photos for this procedure?
We asked Dr. Rohrich for tips on how to find the right doctor and here’s what he had to say:

RealSelf (RS): We read that you started writing Navigate Your Beauty after hearing one too many stories about “botched” plastic surgery. Every story starts with the consumer, so what red flags should they be actively looking for in order to avoid dissatisfaction or worse, disaster?

Dr. Rod Rohrich (RR): When looking at a surgeon’s website, don’t be enamored by how good it looks — everyone is famous on their own website. Instead, focus on the facts. Are they certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery? Surgeons can be unclear about who and what they are certified by.

Dr. Rod Rohrich and his guide to finding the right plastic surgeon, Navigate Your Beauty

We’ve also heard of surgeons “borrowing” before-and-afters from other surgeons to put on their websites. Is there any truth to this?

RR: I’ve heard and seen that, and there are lawsuits. Or, surgeons have altered the results they have. It’s just amazing to me. Ask to see multiple before-and-after photos that are long-lasting — meaning with “afters” that are not just taken a week post-op.

MORE: How to Evaluate a Doctor’s Before-and-After Pictures

RS: Anywhere else where plastic surgery marketing can be misleading?

RR: [Medical tourism outside the US that advertises] that you’re going to be on a beach. If you’re going to have a facelift, you can’t be at the beach and you can’t be in the sun or by the pool. It’s a little bit of marketing hype.

Also, the savings that you would reap by going international will be gone if you have a problem. We see that weekly. A patient goes international and gets a facelift, and if they have a problem when they return to the US, no surgeon will see them. They have to be seen in an ER in a public hospital at two in the morning.

This doesn’t mean you won’t encounter any complications in the United States, but if you do, your surgeon will be able to take care of it. Buyer beware.

MORE: Here's Why I Chose to Do My Plastic Surgery in the States

Want even more tips on how to choose the right plastic surgeon? Head over to our handy Doctor Consultation Questionnaire to get a list of all the questions to ask your doctor before allowing them to work on you.

Have additional tips from your own beauty journey? Share them in the comments section below!

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