After Two Consultations, I Like Both Surgeons, How do I Decide?

I really liked and respected both camps so I am having trouble deciding which way to go. All things are equal as far as qualifications and price. Please help!

Doctor Answers 27

After Two Consultations, I Like Both Surgeons, How do I Decide?

Go with the better looking one.......just kidding...Assuming training, cost and results to be equal, I find the next level of decision making for many patients is the office staff. I send out evaluation forms to all of my patients and many say they love my staff and that other doctors employees turned them off. You will have some scheduling issues and may have questions needing answering my the nurse, so take all of that into consideration!

Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Choosing a Plastic Surgeon

When considering Plastic Surgery, always choose a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.  This may sound obvious, but many physicians perform procedures that outside of the spectrum of their practice and training.  Compare before and after photos, and talk to other patients who have chosen that surgeon.  Finally, you should select a surgeon and staff who are a good fit for your goals and personality.  You should like your surgeon and feel comfortable with him/her.  There are many skilled Plastic Surgeons, and you want to make sure that you are very comfortable with your entire experience. 

All the best,

Dr. Skourtis

Mia E. Skourtis, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

How to choose a surgeon?

Firstly, you need to find a board certified plastic surgeon (no other "certification" has any formal training in breast augmentation despite the names given to the "boards"). Finding members of ASPS and ASAPS are beneficial and also looking at before and after images from the physician. With all things being equal, you have to pick the person with whom you had the most "connection."  You will have to trust your surgeon to make some decisions for you when you are under anesthesia and you want to make sure that your surgeons goals best match your ultimate outcome. In the end - go with your gut instinct.

Best of luck,

Vincent Marin, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon

Vincent P. Marin, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

After two consultations, I like both surgeons, how do I decide?

Hello! Thank you for your question.  Cost will vary among plastic surgeons as well as with geographic location and what procedures exactly they will be providing to you.  Certainly, researching a board certified plastic surgeon well-versed in the procedure(s) you desire is recommended - checking the American Board of Plastic Surgery is a great start. Consult with two or more surgeons who you are happy with their postoperative photographs and those who you, most importantly, feel comfortable and confident with. Use the opportunity to ask questions as well as visit with staff and investigate the accredited facilities they work out of.  I believe fellowship-training, beyond the core plastic surgery residency to be important, as that surgeon has gone above and beyond to seek additional training specific to that area of interest and chosen to gain additional expertise in that area.   

Experience should not be measured solely by the age of the surgeon or how many years s/he has been in practice.  Checking the education and training is more valuable - a Board Certified MD plastic surgeon who was accepted to and completed an integrated plastic surgery residency, in today's day and age, are excellent choices. Those are the top students who have superior training at top institutes.  Plastic Surgery is NOT a is a residency. Those surgeons who have actually successfully completed additional fellowship training beyond the plastic surgery residency are also passionate about that area and will likely have the most recent, innovative, and up to date techniques. These are usually the younger surgeons, who are still readily willing and competent to continue to strive for the newest material and remain up to date on literature and conferences. 

You must decide for yourself who you are most comfortable with and confident with who will meet your goals and expectations. Cost may differ just on expertise and the aforementioned additional training ad what that additional expertise training has afforded to his/her patients.  Hope that this helps!  Best wishes!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Depends on what you find most important

What do you find the most important? In these situations, you should consider what's most important to you and see which surgeon is better at that. For example, rapport is an important factor to consider for many patients, so they choose the surgeon they get along with better.  

How to Pick the Best Plastic Surgeon

How do I pick the best Plastic Surgeon is what you are asking. Here is my advice:

  • Verify Board Certification by American Board of Plastic Surgery (do this online)
  • Member of American Society of Plastic Surgery (requirements beyond Board Certification)
  • Member of American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (indicates extensive experience in aesthetic surgery - see below link)
  • Look at online review sites - like RealSelf, Health Grades,RateMDs, Google, etc
  • Look at Before and After photos
  • What is my instinct or "gut reaction" as to who I relate to better, answers my questions more fully and who I basically trust the most.
  • Finally ask yourself - if I was to have a complication, who would be the best to take care of me.

Larry Nichter, MD, FACS

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 107 reviews

Outcomes and The Quality of Your Relationship are Very Important

Hi there-

Plastic Surgery, more than most other medical specialties, will produce outcomes and experiences that are dependent on intangibles unrelated to the physician's credentials.

On other words, I'm glad that you have found two surgeons with excellent qualifications. This is a great place to start from. 

Making the decision from here should be based on the quality of the relationships you will enjoy (or not) with the surgeon and the staff in the practice. Remember that over the next few months and for up to a year, you will be interacting a great deal with these people and that your safety and happiness will be in the balance. As much as most surgeons would like to believe that their qualities as a surgeon are all that should matter, it is simply not the case. The experience is as important as the outcome...

Which brings me to my second point- the OUTCOMES your surgeon is able to demonstrate should be very important in your decision making. In plastic surgery, this is, in fact, our work product, right? You would never buy a painting from an artist without seeing lots of examples of his artwork... If you were hiring an architect, you would want to see lots of examples of other beautiful buildings he had designed, right? This is no different- beyond his education, training, and experience, the only way to know that your surgeon has the SKILL and TALENT (things that are different to gauge otherwise) to make you happy is to see many (not one or two) examples of lovely, natural outcomes produced by him.

Once you've considered the above, the right choice should present itself to you. If after these matters are taken into consideration you are still uncertain, I would take this to mean that you are probably equally likely to be safe and happy in either of their hands!

Liking to surgeons.

Liking both of your plastic surgeons is a good thing.  It's also good if both of them are making similar recommendations as it confirms that the surgical plan is sound.

If you like both equally you may have to turn to personal things in your life that may help make the decision.  Is one office closer to you than the other?  Are they both available at the same time when you have time to recover?  Do you like their staff?

It seems like you can't go wrong with either one.  I suggest making a list of pros and cons.  It might help.


Good luck with your choice.

Adam Tattelbaum, MD
Washington DC Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 82 reviews

Did you ever have to make up your mind?

If you are choosing between two well qualified surgeons - that's great!  There's an abundance of talent in your area!  Here are some other ideas to help you with your choice:

Look at their before and after photos.

Ask about how they handle complications.

Speak to other patients from their practice.

Which practice gives you "the warm fuzzies"?

Which one has done more of your procedures?


All the best!

Who is the best doctor????

That is a very good question. If you make sure that the doctor is certified by the American board of Plastic Surgery. That way you will know that they have had the proper training in performing this procedure. You can also find out what reputable hospitals they could perform this procedure in. If they can not do it there they should not be doing it any where. If you have already confirmed the above then sometimes asking friends or hospital employees will help. Last but not least how do you feel about the doctor and his or her office? Have all of your questions been answered, have you looked at photos and are you comfortable with the doctor, staff and the office in general. The price will probably not be that different but you can take that in to consideration also. If you do this I am sure you will be very happy with your results.


Wm. Aiello M.D. 

William Aiello, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 11 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.