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Friday, 11 October 2013

The DOs and DON'Ts of choosing where and by whom to have plastic surgery

Choosing to go under the knife is a difficult decision. There is an agony of choice that goes hand in hand with any procedure: Which surgeon? Which hospital? This short blog gives my own opinion as to how to best go about making that decision a little easier:

Do:

  • Your research - not all surgeons are equally qualified to do the job, and neither do all private hospitals offer the same quality of care
  • Ask friends or relatives who have had surgery for some advice
  • Speak to your GP - perhaps they know a reputable surgeon and hospital
  • Visit the clinics and ask questions - reputable clinics have nothing to hide and will be happy to answer
  • Ask your surgeon about his/her qualifications/experience/complications
  • Ask about the procedure itself AND the aftercare that can be expected
  • Ask how much it all costs and if there are any hidden costs
  • Choose a surgeon who is on the GMC Specialist Register in Plastic Surgery
  • Choose a surgeon who holds the FRCS(plast) qualification
  • Choose a surgeon who is a member of BAPRAS or BAAPS
  • Choose a surgeon who holds (or has held) a NHS Consultant post - these are highly competitive positions and NHS surgeons are subject to large amounts of oversight

Don't:

  • Assume that a good deal is a good deal - you usually get what you pay for
  • Go abroad for your surgery - it may appear cheaper, but the pieces too often get picked up back home
  • Accept to talk to anyone other than your operating surgeon in your consultations
  • Be fooled by 'special deals' - trying to get you through the door in that manner is unethical practice and should ring alarm bells as to the ethical standards of that clinic
  • Feel pressured into having surgery EVER
  • Rush your decision - a good surgeon and clinic will not operate within 2 weeks of your first consultation and will usually offer a free second consultation prior to any surgery
  • Assume that big is better - larger cosmetic chains are businesses first and foremost. They look at the bottom line. You don't seriously think that the cost savings from using PIP implants was passed to patients do you?

The list is by no means exhaustive and I welcome comments and suggestions. Be safe!


CD

2 comments:

  1. You state 'NHS surgeons are subject to large amounts of oversight'. I would consider that a negative in chosing a surgeon who consulted for the NHS?

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comment. What I mean is that the appointment of an NHS consultant is subject to a large amount of oversight. It is a competitive process so the successful candidate must be of a 'certain standard' just to get the job. Not only that, but the work that the surgeon does is also subject to oversight with regular service provision updates etc... to ensure that they are up to date with latest techniques, safety etc... While the best independent practitioners also undergo the same (or similar) rigorous processes, it is not a requirement, whereas in the NHS it is mandatory. I hope that clarifies things?

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