How do I choose my doctor for eyelid surgery?

If a dr has been practicing for several years, can I feel comfortable having him do eyelid surgery on me? I have wanted my lids done for years, amongst other things. How do I know?

Doctor Answers 7

How to choose an eyelid plastic surgeon

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Thank you for your question.  Board certification,  experience, and an excellent reputation in plastic surgery and your community are all important factors.

However eyelid surgery or  oculoplastic surgery is a very specific subspecialty of plastic surgery  and not all plastic surgeons are equally comfortable with or skilled at  complex eyelid surgery.

Be sure to consult multiple plastic surgeons and specifically asked, he eyelid cases they do a year, are they comfortable with eyelid surgery, and insist on seeing before and after photographs of patients they have operated on.  He should also ask if the surgeon can provide a former patient who is willing to contact you to discuss their experience.

How do I choose my doctor for eyelid surgery?

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      Board certification, credentials, many good before and after photos, and experience are all important qualities.

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

How do I choose my doctor for eyelid surgery?

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I would suggest you find a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and ideally a member of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) that you trust and are comfortable with. You should discuss your concerns with that surgeon in person.

Robert Singer, MD FACS

La Jolla, California

Robert Singer, MD
La Jolla Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

How to choose a doctor for eyelid surgery

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Hello and thank you for your question.
When it comes to choosing the right doctor, make sure he/she is a board certified plastic surgeon with extensive experience in performing blepharoplasty. Not only is experience important though, so are outcomes. This is a procedure I routinely perform here in my full accredited facility. I recommend that you see a board certified plastic surgeon in consultation to get more specific answers to your questions which can best be addressed after a thorough history and examination is performed.
Best of luck to you!

Choosing your eyelid surgeon

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There are many parameters to look for when searching for an eyelid surgeon. It's important to look at their board certifications, ratings, reviews, testimonials and before and after photo gallery and many years of experience.

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 158 reviews

Unfortunately, there is no magic formula.

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There are several specialties that offer cosmetic eyelid surgery: Oculoplastic surgeons, facial plastic surgeons, and general plastic surgeons.  Of these specialties, oculoplastic surgeons are the most extensively trained in eyelid surgery and are also board certified ophthalmologist so they know how to examine and take care of the eye and eyelids.  It is essential to understand that no set of credentials ensure that your surgeon will be the right one for you. Certainly, it is best if the surgeon is from one of these specialities but that is not a guarantee that your choice will be right for you.

Study the potential surgeons credentials.  Make sure they complete what they start.  Completing residency training at more than one institution can be a concern.  However, occasionally programs close and that would would be a reasonable explanation.  Look for board certification.  If the surgeon is trained in plastic surgery, the should be board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. if they trained in oculoplastic surgery, they should be board certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology and a fellow of the American Society for Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.  If the surgeon is residency trained in otolaryngology, they should be board certified by the American Board Otolaryngology and fellowship trained in facial plastic surgeon and certified by the American Board of Facial Plastic and Recosntructive Surgery.  Surgeons who do not complete training and certification should raise a note of caution.

Do they have hospital privileges for the surgeries they perform.  This is important because this requires peer review by colleagues who know them best.  Do they maintain malpractice insurance for the surgeries they perform.  Some states permit surgeon who have trouble getting malpractice insurance to put up a bond or otherwise "self-insure."  This should raise a note of concern.

Has the surgeon been disciplined by the legal system or their State Medical Board?  Often State Medical Boards have websites so you can directly see if there have been disciplinary issues.  I do not think I personally would be comfortable with a surgeon who has gone to prison for say tax evasion.  Does that make them a bad surgeon?  I personally want a surgeon who is upright in everything they do.  Some people are more forgiving.

Do you like the surgeon's work?  Study their website.  Make sure the results on the website are actually those of the surgeon.  Shockingly in some cases, the work is "representative."  That means it is not the surgeon's actually work.  That is deceptive.  If you do not like the work you see on their website, do not assume your surgery will be any better.  It is human nature, we put our best work up on the website.

When you visit the surgeon, how are you treated.  Is the visit about the surgeon or is it about you.  Did the surgeon actually spend any time with you during the consultation.  A surgeon should sit down with you and talk with you about what you are looking to accomplish.  They should carefully examine you and then discuss treatment options in detail.  

Get more than one opinion.  If you are more confused, that probably means that you are not ready to make a decision.  Hope this information is helpful.  

Kenneth D. Steinsapir, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Choosing a surgeon

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You should ensure that he is board certified in that particular specialty, he has experience and he performs that surgery on a regular basis. You could ask to speak to patients that he performed surgery on as well.

Michel Siegel, MD
Houston Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 113 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.