Choosing a Dr. for Breast Augmentation, If a Doctor has had a Bad Review Should I Keep Looking?

Hello,I was recently informed that the Dr. I had in mind for awhile is responsible for symmastia(a fellow JBI member informed me that she had this complication after having her breast augmentation done by him a few years ago) Now I was comfortable because a lot of my friends (5) have all had beautiful results with him and to find out that someone was not pleased with his work makes me uneasy.. is this acceptable or should I just look for another Dr. Any advice?

Doctor Answers 21

Stick to your gut feeling about the surgeon and your friends recommendations - much more reliable than internet reviews

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I would strongly advise you to make an appointment for the consultation with surgeon of your choice first. It is important to meet the doctor, talk to him in person about your expectations. Ask for the before and after pictures to see for yourself his work. The problem with the reviews on the internet is that you can not be certain it was done by real patient. Internet is sometimes a great source of information, but unfortunately can also be misleading and not an accurate description of particular surgeons practice. Negative reviews can be posted by anybody who has access to the internet and cannot be trusted. You should stick to your gut feeling and follow recommendations of your friends. It is much more reliable than internet reviews. 

Bad review

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god, i wish every surgery came out perfectly. unfortunately we all have complications. the trick is to know how to deal with them while maintaining a professional doctor - patient relationship.  i am sure that no matter what you do for a living, you have some days where things just dont gho exactly as you want them to.the unfortunate thing is that the unhappy patient is so much louder than the happy patient, and on the internet there is no way to give an explanation.  if you were comfortable stay there.

Jonathan Saunders, MD
Newark Plastic Surgeon

Informative ways to choose the right Plastic Surgeon for Breast Augmentation

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Great question-thank you.

You want to know as much as possible about your surgeon’s skills, experience, and credentials. Although complaints on the internet could represent a problem, it is important to note that not all complaints are valid. Any patient can say anything on the internet and such complaints can not be defended by the surgeon.
Your surgeon cannot violate the privacy of his or her patients, but he or she should be able to tell you how many complications he/she has had with your surgery. You can also check Medical Practice Act, which is available to the public and is a record of lawsuits which are complaints that have been judged with evidence.

The best way to pick a surgeon is to make sure he or she is a plastic surgeon, certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery primarily. Then ask to review photos. You should see many photos that represent quality, not just one or two. This approach does not give guarantees but simply optimizes your chances of getting a quality surgeon and quality result.

Jay Burns, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Breast Augmentation & Online Doctor Reviews

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One thing to remember today, online reviews are totally subjective and most of the time categorically have not been confirmed or checked by anyone as they are totally voluntary. They can be done by a plastic surgeon’s competitor, a patient, or a fictitious individual, so there is no way to verify or confirm whether the review is good or bad. Therefore, that is why most review sites have been called in to question and have been the subject of many legal and ethical debates. I think, overall, if anyone has been practicing for more than 5 years and if you see all great reviews that would be very uncommon or perhaps even made up by someone. If one is seeing patients over a long period of time, there are some that obviously are not going to have a completely satisfactory result and so 1-2 “not so good” reviews and with many others being fine should not prevent somebody from going to see that doctor for a cosmetic procedure.

Rod J. Rohrich, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon

Choosing a plastic surgeon for BA

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I know of no surgeon, including myself, who is without complications. It happen even to the best of us.  If a plastic surgeon tells you that he/she never has complications, then he/she is either lying to you or doesn't do any surgery.

The key is being able to promptly recognize and take care of problems when they arise. Fotunately, this doesn't happen very often. If you have confidence in your doctor and have the experience of five friends to back it up, then i see no need to switch. On the other hand, there are many qualified plastic surgeons who perform breast augmentation and do it well. 

It doesn't hurt to go for a consultation and see what your impression is. You can also seek out two opinions and compare recommendations.

Good Luck. I wish you well.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 221 reviews

Choosing a Plastic Surgeon for Breast Augmentation

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Any plastic surgeon that claims to have never had a complication or an unhappy patient is either untruthful or very inexperienced.  One bad review gives credibility to other favorable reviews.  Make sure you check your doctor's certifications as well as reviews. Your plastic surgeon should be a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and a diplomate of the American Board of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.  When you meet with your surgeon you wioll get a sense of whether or not this is a person you can communicate well with.  That also matters in choosing your plastic surgeon.

Mary Lee Peters, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 117 reviews

Online Reviews-Perspective

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Patient reviews can be an important source of information in choosing a surgeon.  Contributing factors to a bad review may include complications associated with the procedure, miscommunications, etc.   Excellent surgeons will have complications while trying to perform their finest work so an occasional bad review should be regarded with some perspective.  If there is a preponderence of bad reviews you may want to be concerned. 

Michael Sundine, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon

Choosing a Plastic Surgeon

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All plastic surgeons have complications.  We all have patients out there from hundreds to thousands of patients we have performed surgery for over the years.  We do not hit home runs for all patients.  It really depends on how the complication was handled that can turn a bad experience into a better one. 

The five girls friends of yours that give a thumbs up in the most telling.  But, go with your gut.

Miguel Delgado, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

Good doctor, bad reviews....

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This is such a great question.  Every surgeon has a personal goal of 100% patient satisfaction. Sometimes, a patient and surgeon may disagree about an outcome, perhaps expectations are not clear or worse yet a patient misunderstands or fails to follow post op instructions....maybe a physician recomends a procedure that the patient wasn't ready or prepared to hear....there are 1000 reasons for a patient to post a negative review, valid or not. The sad part os if the patient had instead gone back to the surgeon and discussed theri concerns, perhaps all parties could have found a resolution. HIPPA laws prohibit a doctor or his staff from addressing patient concerns personally on the internet and no one goes back usually to explain why they wrote whatever they did. Nor do they go back and take down the post if the situation is resolved. 

If you have several friends that are pleased with this surgeon, he or she has the right credntials, and you are comfortable with the fact that he and his staff will take care of you, please don't let what is probably a miscommunication during a vulnerable time change your mind. 

Remember no one polices the internet. Best of luck with youe surgery!

Thomas B. Lintner, MD, FACS
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon

Plastic surgery reviews

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I would agree with the other doctors who answered your question. One or two bad reviews is by no means an indication of a bad surgeon. If you have met with him/her and like what they have to say, have in your case 5 happy friends, and otherwise feel confident about moving forward then surgery with this individual is probably a smart decision.

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.