How Do You Make Sure You Choose the Best Doctor to Perform Breast Aug, Lift and Tummy Tuck?

I'm a 37 year old mommy of 4 (all c-sections) & I breastfed. I am looking to get breast aug, lift and tummy tuck. I've saved my cash because I've been wanting to do this for a long time. I'm ready to proceed & I am very confused about choosing the right doctor. I've been to 2 consults thus far and I have 2 more scheduled. The first doctor I really liked but I couldnt find any reviews on him. What's the best way to ensure you select the right doctor? What should I look for and what ?'s shld I ask

Doctor Answers 16

How to find the right plastic surgeon

Assuming that you are only evaluating surgeons that are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, I would suggest speaking with other patients who have undergone surgery with the  doctor of interest.  In the greater Charlotte area there are a number of very qualified plastic surgeons from which to choose.  Your plan to meet with several surgeons is excellent, but try not to "over-think" your decision.  This website (RealSelf) has a number of reviews on Plastic Surgeons in the greater Charlotte area who may be right for you.   Feel free to check out my reviews on this website.  Good luck.  Eric Emerson, MD

Charlotte Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Finding the Right Surgeon?

Thank you for the question.

Check with the  American  Board of Plastic Surgery  and/or  The American Society of Plastic Surgeons for plastic surgeons appropriately trained and certified. This is a good place to start.

There are a number of advantages in choosing a qualified and highly experienced Board Certified plastic surgeon to perform your cosmetic surgery. If there are any complications during surgery, an experienced plastic surgeon will be more adept at handling the situation. In addition, a plastic surgeon that has performed many cosmetic surgeries will have had more time to perfect his or her technique and results.

Reputable plastic surgeons should have privileges to perform cosmetic surgery procedures in the operating room at an accredited hospital, not just in the surgery center in their office. They work with a highly skilled team including, board certified anesthesiologists, nurses, and technicians to enhance patient comfort and to provide a peace of mind to the patient’s and their families.

Next evaluate the experience level and quality of results by looking at before and after pictures and examining/talking to patients who have had similar procedures performed.

Once you have done enough due diligence research you will feel comfortable with the plastic surgeon you choose.

I hope this helps.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,484 reviews

Thr right doctor for you

I think after you do the basic research like board certification in plastic and reconstructive surgery and due dilagence you should be very comfortable with the confidence of the surgeon to meet your expectations. And you should be really clear about what you expect. Another thing that I feel is very important is you know your doctor will take care of you the day of surgery, but what if something goes wrong...where will you be treated, does he participate in Cosmetassure or can he tell you at least his fees for unplanned return to surgery. Who else will be assisting with your procedure? Are you as comfortable with them as well as his partners? How do you get in touch with him with concerns? There are so many questions to be answered, and any surgeon worth your time will answer any question you have. People usually spend more time evaluating a new car than a plastic surgeon and you can't return your liposuction if it doesn't work out for you. Take your time and you'll find the right surgeon and practice for you. Best of luck on your search!

Thomas B. Lintner, MD, FACS
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
3.9 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Choosing the Best Mommy Makeover Surgeon for You

Hi there-

Let's begin with the basics- those things that any and all surgeons should be able to satisfy before you even consider them, then we'll talk about how to narrow it down and choose...

So, before you even consider them, they should:

  1. Be Certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery (check by going to the Board's website)
  2. Have a good (or better) reputation in your community (ask your gynecologist and family doctor, and maybe even a few friends who've had surgery)
  3. When you visit with them, be sure to ask if they have privileges to perform the procedure they are recommending for you in a hospital. If they do not, run away.
  4. Have a good (or better) record online as well (sites like this one are useful, BUT...)

With regard to online reviews, please know the following:

  • Because it is possible for people to post things anonymously on the internet, most doctors who have more than a few reviews at some point will experience the unhappy indignity of having a patient say ugly (often untrue) things about them on the internet. 
  • As long as the majority of what you find is positive, and especially if it seems to contradict the ugly ones, it would be safe to believe that those very few negative reviews might be due to a patient who didn't follow instructions, had unreasonable expectations, or damaged their relationship with their surgeon and have resorted to defaming them online. Sad, but it does happen.
  • It is therefore important to take the "big picture" approach- read everything you can before deciding- and remember that more information is good... I would always be more comfortable with a doctor (or other professional) who had 30 reviews- even if 2 of them were terrible (as long as the other 28 were great), than I would be with someone who had 4 great reviews.

Okay, so now you should have a short list of a few surgeons you want to consider for your procedure. Here's some advice on how to narrow it down:

  • Look at lots of their photos. And I mean lots. Not just photos of the procedures you think you want or need, either... You want to get an idea of the surgeon's skill and talent, and the best way to do so is to look at lots of their previous work. 
  • Just as you should take reviews with a grain of salt if there are only a few of them, be careful how you evaluate surgeons who only show a few photos of their work. 
  • Realize that your outcome and safety are going to depend on the talents, ethics, and morals of your surgeon, and that the relationship between the two of you will be critical to achieving safety and happiness... You want to find someone who is kind and with whom you can have a solid, positive relationship.

By following these guidelines, you should be in good shape- 

Armando Soto, MD, FACS
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Choosing the right doctor for your mommy makeover should be done the right way

Choosing a plastic surgeon for your mommy makeover, or for any procedure for that matter, should be done carefully until you find the right one for you.  I would make sure that he/she is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.  I would also recommend visiting with several doctors, which you have done, and go with one you feel comfortable with.  Onine searches are good for finding doctor reviews and before and after pictures can give you an idea about your doctor's capabilities.

Jeffrey E. Schreiber, MD, FACS
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 201 reviews

Choosing a plastic surgeon

There may not be a "Best" but perhaps many choices for you depending on where you live and how many surgeons are in your area.

Make certain that your surgeon is a board-certified plastic surgeon and has some years of experience performing surgery in the areas. Schedule 2-3 consultations and see what each recommmends for you.  Base your decision on who you feel is the most qualified and listened to you about what you want to accomplish, not what he/she wants you to have. I hope this helps.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 181 reviews

Mommy Makeover

Finding an Excellent Cosmetic Surgeon is not easy.  Here are some guidlines.  I wish you the best of luck.
•  Familiarize  yourself with physicians’ qualifications, titles,  and  certifications.

•  Use the  Yellow Pages with discretion.

•  Scan  websites  for general information.

•  Learn as much  as you can  about  the  procedure you want.

•  Consult  friends  and family who have had plastic  surgery.

•  Consult  your family doctor.

•  Don’t forget your hairdresser.

•  Call professional organizations like the American  Society  for Aesthetic  Plastic  Surgery or the  American  Society of Plastic  Surgeons.

•  Make a list of the  names you’ve been  given.

•  Call your state’s medical board  to check  on prospective doctors.

•  Meet with your doctor.

•  Choose a surgeon  you trust  and  with whom you feel comfortable.

Joe Gryskiewicz, MD, FACS
Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 269 reviews

Finding the best plastic surgeon for your mommy make over.

There are several factors you should look for when trying to find a excellent plastic surgeon.  First, make sure your choice is board certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery.  This assures you they have passed the required training and testing to be qualified to practice plastic surgery.  If there is additional membership in The American Board of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, this means your surgeon takes special interest in and has additional expertise in cosmetic surgery. This is the most basic starting point.  From here, as you are doing, you should consult with several surgeons to see who you feel comfortable with and who you have confidence can meet your expectations.  Ask any and all questions you have.  If you have concerns, make sure they are addressed.  Ask to see photos of their work and, if possible, to speak with prior patients.  Check their website as well.  All these combined should help you get an idea of your comfort level with them, their experiance and expected results.  


Jeffrey M. Darrow, MD
Boston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 98 reviews

Selecting the right plastic surgeon

It is difficult to always know if you have selected the right plastic surgeon. It is very important that you make sure that they are indeed a plastic surgeon and certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. There are physicians practicing who use deceptive terminology in order to hide from their patients the fact that they are not residency trained plastic surgeons and instead, something else ... like a general surgeon or ob-gyn.

You should also feel comfortable with them and their staff and make sure that they explain everything to you patiently - not rushed. Avoid offices where you feel like you are on an assembly line or where there is over-slick marketing, etc. Check their reputations.

You also should request to see some of their photos of patients that they have done. 

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Choosing a plastic surgeon for a mommy makeover

Sometimes it can be difficult to choose the right surgeon.  First, you should look at his or her credentials.  I would suggest that you first look for board certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.  Also, make sure that he or she performs the procedures at an accredited hospital or surgery center, and that he or she also has privileges at a hospital to perform the same procedure.

Once the qualifications are met, it comes down to the intangibles.  Ask to look at before and after pictures, and possibly to speak with patients.  Also, pay attention to how comfortable you are communicating with the surgeon and the office staff.  Sometimes it comes down to who you trust, can easily communicate with, and where you feel comfortable. 

Remember that reviews on the internet are not reliable sources.  It is probably more valuable to speak with former patients of that physician, talk to your OB/gyn or family physician, and trust your instincts.

Good luck!

Anureet K. Bajaj, MD
Oklahoma City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 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.