Am I being too picky about selecting a plastic surgeon? Are my expectations unrealistic?

Pics off of websites are hard to decipher. For BA on any given website show great results and results that I'd be unhappy with. For TT, it's the same problem. I don't see anyone so far that has 100% of pics that I'm happy with (except someone very far away). I know that some of what I considerable unfavorable results, may be beyond the surgeons control, but not sure to what extent. Like - uneven boobs, Crooked nipples, high TT scars, strange belly buttons, implants too high or round, etc. Advice?

Doctor Answers 10

Mommy make-over - finding the right plastic surgeon.

Thank you for asking about your mommy make-over,
  • If you are seeing less than perfection in before/after photos - because the photos are honest.
  • There are many reasons for less than perfect results.
  • Not every woman wants her photos on the internet - many of my patients do not.
  • Next, most photos are taken at 6 weeks and final results can take 6 months or more.
  • Also a surgeon has to work with the patient's anatomy - and no one starts off with perfect anatomy
  • We are all much more asymmetric than we realize -
  • And some women's goals may not be yours.
  • For instance, some want the shortest scar possible - others want the best result possible.
  • Some need liposuction but choose not to have it.
  • Some women want the largest possible implants - that don't look good to other people.
  • Some women have breasts that are positioned differently on the chest - surgery can't change this.
  • If you find a surgeon with 100% perfect results - I can 100% guarantee you that the photos are touched up and you are not seeing real results.
Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Best wishes  - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Selecting Your Plastic Surgeon for a Mommy Makeover

All surgical procedures carry some degree of #risk. Always discuss your issues and concerns with the Plastic Surgeon during and following your consultation. Information that you read online may not apply to your personal situation. The suitability of your procedures and any specific risks may be determined during you #consultation.  Your surgery should be performed by a #PlasticSurgeon who is board-certified and has a great deal of experience with the procedures you are seeking. For instance, a plastic surgeon who have specialized in breast surgery and cosmetic surgery is suitable to perform your #BreastAugmentation. Aside from checking #board-certification, it is suggested that you look at before and after photos of the surgeons actual patients, and read patient reviews. Gathering all of this information will help you make a well-informed decision.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 110 reviews

Choosing a P.S.

Photos of results are obviously a way to start since you will be judging your results by looking at them! You are correct that often there are factors that are out of the surgeon's control. There will be a range of results for EVERY surgeon. Not every result is a "home run", but you'd like to see generally good results posted. Perhaps the scar needed to be a bit higher because the upper skin was not very stretchy and the patient preferred that over a vertical scar component. Perhaps the belly button already had scar from infected piercings that affected the result. Perhaps patient wanted "fake looking boobs" - (we get that a lot in Miami).If the nipples are uneven to start, they will be uneven at the end, Etc, Etc, Etc.Nonetheless,  after seeing generally good results, assuring the surgeon is board certified, seeing generally positive reviews you should see at least 2-3 p.s. in person and see who feels like the most comfortable fit for you.

Robert H. Hunsaker, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 82 reviews

Am I being too picky about selecting a plastic surgeon? Are my expectations unrealistic?

Thank you for your excellent question.  Ultimately the best surgeon decision is made by seeing several in consultation to have the best treatment recommendations made to you based on your desired goal outcomes. Consultations provide you the opportunity to interview the physicians to assess your comfort level, evaluate their photographs of previous work, and have them discuss with you what are realistic expectations to anticipate as well as discuss where asymmetries are likely to remain based on your starting point.  Hope this helps.

Nelson Castillo, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 68 reviews

Am I being too picky about selecting a plastic surgeon? Are my expectations unrealistic?

I think those are excellent questions.  Personally, I do not think it is possible to be "too picky" when selecting a surgeon (you are trusting them with your body).  Be sure that the surgeon is a board-certified plastic surgeon who is experienced at performing the operations you desire.  An experienced plastic surgeon will be able to tell you if your expectations are unrealistic.  While some things are beyond the surgeon's control (as you stated), it is perfectly reasonable to ask a surgeon questions about the results shown in their before and after photos (eg. "Why is this tummy tuck scar located here?")  Based upon your history, physical exam and desires, they should be able to inform you regarding what you can reasonably expect as a surgical outcome.  By communicating your concerns clearly, you will be informed whether or not those specific issues apply to you (and you will then be able to determine if you are being realistic).  If you go into surgery with unrealistic expectations, it is likely you will be unhappy with the outcome.Best wishes. 

Craig S. Rock, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Are my expectations unrealistic?

This is a valid question.  My advice would be to choose your surgeon carefully.  Visit a few and have face-to-face consultations.  Do not be afraid to ask a lot of questions and allow plenty of time for your visit.  Ask to see pictures.  Try on implants.  Be clear about your concerns.  Good communication is essential in your decision-making process.  I wish you the best of luck!

Fara Movagharnia, DO, FACOS
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 50 reviews

Too Picky in Expectations?

To be happy with cosmetic surgery (or any surgery for that matter), the patient has to have realistic expectations. If what you see is not consistent with what you think would make you happy with a result then perhaps this operation isn't for you.Next, you must be able to develop a rapport with your surgeon and be comfortable in the notion that he/she will do their very best to get you the best result possible (for you). There is an element of trust here.Finally, I think Dr Morgan's answer (below) and points to consider are exactly right and contribute to developing a realistic view of what can be accomplished.For the best results seek the consultation of a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. They have a website listing all the certified plastic surgeons. Members of the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery will all be board certified in plastic surgery and have demonstrated an interest and special skill in cosmetic plastic surgery as well.

Alexander G. Nein, MD, MS, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Find the right surgeon

Far more important than the technique is the skill and experience of your plastic surgeon. Choose your surgeon rather than the technique and let them explain why one technique may be better than another. 
See the below link on some suggestions on finding the most qualified Plastic Surgeon for a consult.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

The chosen one, some advices:

Thank you very much for sharing your concerns with us.
I usually tell my patients that the first step for a safe plastic surgery is to choose a board certified aesthetic and reconstructive plastic surgeon. This should have a personal website containing details of his professional biography and some photos of the procedures performed. Your plastic surgeon should be  transparent and a honest person with you, with ethical and human values, and especially with good reputation and history. Also, it's much better if this doctor have special training and experience in procedures like the one you're interested. Finally, i invite you to send your photos to give you more information of interest for you. Kind regards, 
Dr. Emmanuel Mallol Cotes.-        

Emmanuel Mallol Cotes, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 270 reviews

Am I being too picky about selecting a plastic surgeon? Are my expectations unrealistic?

Thank you for the excellent and insightful question. No, I do not think that it is possible to be "too picky"; careful selection of your plastic surgery will be key. On the other hand, there are many variables when it comes to before/after photographs. Probably best to evaluate overall consistency of the quality of work and pay attention to factors such as every patient's initial starting points etc.

 I think you will find, after doing your due diligence, that you will feel comfortable selecting a plastic surgeon. At that point, it will be important that you communicate your goals, concerns, and preferences carefully. Again, use of goal photographs may be very helpful in this communication process. It is most likely, after careful selection of plastic surgeon, careful communication of goals,  and  achieving an understanding of realistic expectations of outcomes, that you will end up with results you will be pleased with.
 Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,499 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.