Is a South American Doctor More Qualified?

I read on the internet that South American doctors are more advanced than american or european doctors. Why would that be? I know that in SA culture it is so normal to have work done. They do it all the time. Are they really good? I do see on the spanish channels how beautiful these women look. They look so perfect. Their looks and bodies as well. My columbian friend is always talking about how she got this and that done as if it were nothing. She looks amazing.

Doctor Answers 3

Best surgeons

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I believe that there are great surgeons everywhere. You should go on patient recommendations and value the work that you see.

Choosing a surgeon by country

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Having trained in south america and the united states I can say that is not true. The best surgeon for a given patient depends on what procedure the patient wants, the surgeons training and experience, the rapport between the patient and surgeon and the environment in which the surgery is performed. For a specific procedure in a specific patient a specific surgeon may be the best fit while for a different procedure in the same patient that surgeon is not a good fit. It is not specific to the country that the surgeon lives in which may be different from the one where he or she trained. You can find excellent surgeons in the US and Mexico and very bad surgeons in the US and Mexico. The same goes for Brazil, Argentina etc.

Aaron Stone, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon

Geography is less important than quality

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Hi there-

While I know there are excellent surgeons on the continent of South America, I also know many outstanding plastic surgeons in Europe, North America, Australia, and Asia (and I'm sure there are some great surgeons in Antarctica and Africa, I just am not acquainted)...

The point I am making is that there is nothing about the geography that would make surgeons in South America necessarily more qualified to successfully perform your procedure.

And while it may have been true in the past that many of the South American cultures were less stigmatized about the idea of cosmetic surgery and therefore it was more commonly performed on a per capita basis, I can tell you that almost all current research on this matter indicates a global relaxation of attitudes and increase in demand worldwide over the past 30 years. So I would not necessarily assume that surgeons in South America perform the procedure you want more often and so are better at it.

With regard to your friend, while I am pleased to hear she looks great (happy patients are good for all of us), I can tell you that I get a phone call at least once a month from a woman who traveled to another country for plastic surgery and now has a terrible infection or is simply very displeased with her outcome... and now has to pay me to fix it... In other words, it would be foolish to think that she looks good BECAUSE she went to Colombia... She looks good because she had a good surgeon, and was a bit lucky.

The bottom line is that the quality of elective healthcare in the United States is easily as high as anywhere else in the world, and your chances of finding an outstanding surgeon here are equally high.

But you do need to make your choices carefully... Just as it would be foolish to think that just because a surgeon practices in South America he must be good, it would be just as foolish to think that just because a surgeon practices in the US he is the best for you... Or that we are all equally good and so it would be smart to choose based on who gives you the lowest price....

Find a surgeon certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery that you like and feel you can trust. Do your homework on their qualifications, their facility, and the anesthesia provider. 

For some more sound advice on how to go about finding the best surgeon for you, follow the link below:

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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.