Can I get medical clearance from anywhere other than my primary care?

Im getting a bbl July 19th. I'm 21, 5'10, 205 lbs, athletic, healthy. Dr. Salama's office needs my medical clearance 3 weeks before surgery. My primary care refuses to clear me before a week prior to the surgery. I have no idea what to do about this. No walk in clinics in my area will do it because I'm not a patient, so I'm completely at a loss. I've invested so much, and have been planning for months. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Doctor Answers 4

Medical clearance

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Best to talk it over with your medical doctor and explain the situation. Good luck with your surgery.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Medical clearance issues

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Medical clearance issues  should be taken very seriously and should be performed by your primary care physician. We thoroughly explain this to our patients they must start this process immediately after the consult so time does not become a factor.  If you want to do some homework and call certain medical groups they will perform medical clesrance .   Best of luck in your endeavors and your upcoming surgery !

James Fernau, MD, FACS
Pittsburgh Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Medical Clearance and Cosmetic Surgery

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Medical Clearance has different purposes for different people. The most common reason for getting a medical clearance is to assure the surgeon and anesthesiologist that it is rather safe to operate on someone. This is usually obtained on older patients and or on high risk patients. Since the most common source of problems may have to do with the heart, we often obtain clearance from a Cardiologist who in some cases would actually test the heart with a Stress Test before issuing a clearance.

In MY humble opinion, a "clearance" from a Family Practice physician or a walk in clinic doc in a box which is not based on a thorough evaluation, is devoid of any clinical meaning and is literally a CYA piece of paper. Remember - your Plastic surgeon trained longer and more intensely than someone with a 3 year residency so WHY would he need such a letter to tell him what he already suspects? The only plausible explanation is to have such a piece of paper in your chart SHOULD something happen to you. But at age 21 without obvious medical conditions your risk factors are EXTREMELY low (look up ASA I risks).

The reason why a surgeon wants all the tests in early is to avoid costly late cancellations. I cannot answer as to why your PCP insists on seeing you a week before surgery since chronic conditions are not apt to come on suddenly. Not a logical stance.

As long as you want to keep both physicians, you cannot move forward.

Peter Aldea  MD
Memphis, TN

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Can I get medical clearance from anywhere other than my primary care?

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Medical clearances are important and should be done by your primary care physician as he or she knows your medical history. I recommend explaining the situation to your primary care provider and or your chosen physician. 


Martin Jugenburg, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 519 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.