How long should a breast aug consultation take?

I have been to two consultations. One the doctor only did consultations on Wednesday's and had consultants that did them for him. You booked surgery then met with him @ pre-op. I didn't like this. The next, I didn't feel I could ask all of my questions. It was rushed into about 20 minutes max. I understand surgeons are very busy but there are many factors to consider. Is there a better way to approach your consultation? (I wrote down my questions)

Doctor Answers 23

You should always come away from consultation with a good idea about your options

Like most things, you will find a spectrum of consultation techniques among plastic surgeons, and accordingly, you will find a wide variation of time that it takes for different surgeons to complete a consultation.  Rather than being time oriented, I think ideally we should be more goal oriented in the consultation process.  Understanding that surgeons with busier practices may have to fit more information into a shorter time slot, it also should be noted that there are minimum goals that should be accomplished in any consultation.  And, first of all, you should absolutely meet the surgeon, in my opinion.  After all, this is a person who could potentially operate on you and change your body and your life.   I think it is risky to sign up for any surgery before meeting your surgeon and making sure you are absolutely comfortable with them.  I don't care if they have the nicest, most professional staff in the world, nobody but the doctor is supposed to evaluate you, formulate a care plan, and prescribe treatment.  That is called "medical assessment" and "good faith examination," and in most states it is not only the standard of care, but a state law that only doctors perform assessements.  Nurses, medical assistants, and certainly unlicensed personnel, like consultants or patient coordinators, should not be performing assessments or making recommendations for care.  It is problematic to me that a person could make it all the way to a preop appointment without meeting their surgeon, especially if that preop appointment has been scheduled to coincide with an already scheduled surgical date and potentially unrefundable financial deposits have been paid to get that far.  Personally, I would steer clear of a practice with a surgeon who can't even make an appearance at the initial consult.  What happens during postop follow ups?  What if there is a complication?  How much of that surgeon's time do you think you'll get then?  Beyond that, much of the answer to your question will vary between surgeons and patients themselves.  Some patients are very well researched and have few questions that need to be answered.  Naturally, their consultations will take a bit less than those with lots of questions or who have only begun the consultation process and don't know much about the surgery.  You should never feel self-conscious about gettting your list of questions answered.  In my practice we make every effort to do this during our initial consultation, as well as covering all of the other bases we need to, like a good exam with measurements and sizing, and reviewing images and surgical techniques, and if we need to schedule a second consultation due to time constraints imposed by mine or a patient's schedule, we most certainly will.  Again, we are more goal oriented during the consultation process than time oriented.  In general, though, we have done this enough that we schedule properly, and we rarely need more than our alotted time.  We usually take 90 minutes to 2 hours for the entire process, including meeting with the patient coordinator for logistical, scheduling, and financial information.  I always meet the patients and guide the entire consultation process, and when we are finished I always make sure that I ask them if we've answered all of their questions.  If we haven't, we need to either spend a little more time then, or schedule a second meeting.  But again, the goal is fully informing our patients to their satisfaction, so that they can make the best decision about not only the surgery, but our practice.  

I think one of the best ways that you will be sure to get the best consultations and avoid potentially inexpert care is to be sure that you consult with only board certified plastic surgeons.  In general, those surgeons who have worked hard to become board certified and maintain their certification are the ones with the highest commitment to excellence and competence.  In addition to being certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, your surgeon should also voluntarily participate in the Maintenance of Certification program administered by that board. This is the best way to know that your surgeon not only has the best training and experience for the procedure, but that he or she has maintained currency in the certification requirements as opposed to practicing on a "lifetime" certificate which has only been reviewed once at the beginning of his or her career. For more information on this you can visit,, and .   Good luck.

Now, did I answer your question completely?  Best of luck to you!

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 87 reviews

How long should a breast aug consultation take?

The consultation experience (and the overall "journey") will vary from one practice to another.  In our practice, new patient consultations generally last anywhere from 45 minutes to two hours.  Patients will always meet with me and my staff. 

 You are wise in selecting your plastic surgeon carefully. This careful selection as well as careful communication of goals are the two most important keys to success when it comes to breast augmentation surgery outcomes, in my opinion. 

Best wishes for an outcome that you will be very pleased with

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,487 reviews

Consultation time

It sounds like you are uncomfortable with both practices.  I typically spend 45-60minutes for breast consultation.  Some of this time is with the nurse, some with the doctor, and some is done trying on sizers and shapes. 

More important than the time limit is that you need to feel comfortable with the practice, and surgeon.  For any surgery which you choose.  If you have questions, don't proceed until they are addressed.  If you want a second consultation to make sure the doctor/practice is right for you, tell the receptionist or office manager.  Don't choose a practice solely based on the price, schedule, advertisement, or diplomas on the wall.  You must feel that your doctor has your best interest in mind and that you trust him/her.  I would never let someone operate on me or my own family if I didn't trust them or felt like they were too busy for me.  

Hope that helps,

Christopher C. Chang, MD 

Washington DC, Maryland and Virginia

Christopher C. Chang, MD
Washington DC Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Breast augmentation consultation: How long should it be?

There is no set time for consultation.  I agree with you regarding having all your questions answered. I allow approximately 45 to 60 minutes, unless an interpreter is needed. When this is the case I usually double the time. I begin with an examination, discussion of goals (size and expectations), description of how the procedure is done and the recuperation, review of the risks of surgery, and finally evaluation of pictures of women similar to you in height, weight and starting breast size. All along the way patients can stop me and ask any questions they might have. For me the goal is to answer all questions and provide the information and insights needed to assist patients in determining  whether cosmetic breast surgery is right for them. For more information on this and similar topics, I recommend a plastic surgery Q&A book like "The Scoop On Breasts: A Plastic Surgeon Busts the Myths."

Ted Eisenberg, DO, FACOS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 78 reviews

How long should a breast augmentation consultation take?

Your mileage may vary with different doctors. I personally schedule breast consultations for at least 1 hour. I think this is the most important time to establish both relationship and the makings of a great result. Breast augmentation is a delicate undertaking in that so many preoperative expectations must be understood and addressed. Don't get blown off, keep shopping for the right board-certified plastic surgeon.

Marshall T. Partington, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 80 reviews

Breast augmentation consultation

You bring up a very important question/scenario.  A consultation, no matter what it is for, should never be a rush.  The patient should be able to leave a consultation feeling comfort that they have been able to express their concerns and understand options to treat their concerns.  I personally see every new consultation.  I encourage you to seek consultation from a board certified plastic surgeon that actually spends time hearing your concerns and can provide a logical treatment plan for you.

Best of luck,

Dr. Mooty

R. Clark Mooty, MD
Lubbock Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

How long should a breast aug consultation take?

In my experience I take about and hour or more with my patient during her first consultation, depending on her doubts, questions and curiosity about the surgery, and my need to understand her expectations and needs.

For me the most important key for a good result is to develope a tight bond between the patient and me. Personalized attention is always better for the patient and for the outcoming of the surgery. Is very important that the patient knows in detaile about the procedure, the implants, the type, form, the ideal size, the location of the implants....and many other matters that involve this kind of surgery.

Adolfo Sesto, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Best #breastaugmentation consult with a #plasticsurgeon

Hi Iliauna, Thank you for your excellent question about the breast augmentation consultation process. While this process differs from office to office, it can often be indicative of what to expect also post operatively.  You may consider continuing to look into other offices of other board certified plastic surgeons as there are many in the Southeast and Atlanta area (be sure to consider working with one who's also a member of the ASPS and ASAPS). In our office at CARE Plastic Surgery the breast augmentation consult can take from 45 minutes up to about two hours totally depending on the individual.  In nearly all cases our patients meet with the surgeon (myself) as well as our operative nurse, our patient coordinator and breast sizing specialist.  We offer 3-D imaging and implant try on sessions to also help discern the optimal look and size for each patient.  I hope this is helpful and wish you all the very best.  -Brian S. Coan, MD, FACS

Brian Coan, MD, FACS
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

How long should a breast aug consultation take?

Thank you for your question.  My consultations can vary anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour with a new patient depending on questions.  I would encourage anyone to make sure you pick a plastic surgeon that you feel listens to you and that you feel understands and can meet your expectations.  Review before and after pictures of previous breast augmentations.  Read reviews online from previous patients.  Best of luck to you!

Chad Robbins, MD
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Every practice is a bit different

I cannot speak for other practices, however, in our practice, our patient care coordinator answers the initial phone call and sets up the consultation. Your consultation will then be with me. The entire consultation will take about 45 minutes to 1 hour. During this time, I sit down with you to discuss your goals and the "look" that you are trying to achieve. I also encourage but do not mandate that you bring in a "wish pic" of someone that you may want to look like. This helps guide our discussion as far as look and size. At this point. I take certain breast measurements. This helps us identify the largest implant that can be placed in you safely by respecting your particular anatomy.  Ultimately, based on this discussion and measurements, sizers are worn in the office that will give you visual feedback as far as what you will actually look like with implants in place. The final decision about the size of the implant and whether or not a lift may be needed is then decided on. Also, many women have asymmetries between the two breasts as far as size, shape and nipple position. I will then discuss with you what changes if any that can be made to nipple position, breast size etc., that can be made surgically to help achieve your goals. It is best to be seen by a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who specializes in cosmetic breast surgery to evaluate you. You should always come away from the consultations feeling comfortable with your surgeon and that all of your questions were answered

Best wishes,

Dr. Ravi Somayazula

Ravi Somayazula, DO
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.