There are hundreds of plastic and reconstructive surgeons who could be recommended and are highly qualified, but I know only a few through seminars, books and articles, therefore it would be unfair to recommend only these few. Maybe a few guidelines in choosing a plastic surgeon will help.

Plastic surgery is a drastic method of improving or prolonging the youthful aspect of the face and body and it is irreversible. So spending as much time as you need to choose the surgeon best suited to you and your needs is important. If you want only specific areas done, such as nose or eyes, look for those who specialize in that area. The relationship of the plastic surgeon and yourself is a very personal one. Make sure you feel confident with the surgeon and that all your questions are answered. Before deciding on the surgeon, I suggest that you interview at least two or three.

There are several methods of getting the information you need: Recommendations of friends or acquaintances Referral from your family physician, beauty therapists, etc.

After you get names, arrange for a consultation, make sure you have some questions so that you will feel more confident. You will want to know:

What are the expectations of the type of surgery.

The surgeon’s level of expertise – how often the doctor has performed this type of operation.

The location of incisions and the possible extent of scarring. Are pigmentated scars a possibility?

How long the operation will take and what the recovery period will be.

What are the side effects, the risks, the complications?

What will be done during the surgery?

Cost of the operation, post-operative care, length of hospital stay.

How soon after the operation can you resume tweezing eyebrows, coloring hair, having facials, using a hair dryer, exercising, travelling, being exposed to the sun, using creams and lotions, masks, etc.

Does the surgery have to been done in any particular season?

You should ask about type of anesthesia used.

Are bandages or sutures used.

You should be wary of the following:

A surgeon who is willing to perform exactly the operation you want without offering alternatives or professional opinion as to what you actually need.

A surgeon who is not realistic about the potential results of the operation. Of course, there is no guarantee of the results of the operation but the goal of the surgery is improvment.

A surgeon who will not answer your questions in detail with illustrations when possible and show you examples of his work with “before and after” pictures.

A surgeon who does not wish to take detailed photographs of the area that requires surgery.

A surgeon you do not immediately like. The relationship of a patient and surgeon is special. Good communication is of vital importance to the success of the surgery. Make sure you know all the pro and cons of the operaton. There is a form of trust that must develop; the surgeon should help to solve your problems and not try to hide or disguise what cannot be done.