When making the life-altering decision to undergo plastic surgery, of course you will have[Looks great, thanks!] a long list of qualifying questions to ask your prospective surgeon about his training and skill level. But as you interview him, here are a few equally as important evaluation questions to ask yourself.
Is He Kind?
Upon first meeting, are you warmly welcomed? Do you feel seen and comfortable in his presence? Is there a calm to the interaction, or even better, a light-hearted, energizing, and uplifting connection through humor?
Is the doctor nice to his staff? You can tell so much about a person by the way they treat those that report to them. Does the office atmosphere indicate that this a group of equal partners who respect and enjoy each other? Do they seem to share the common goal of putting the primary focus and attention on the patient in front of them?
Is He Patient?
Does the surgeon answer all of your questions thoroughly and thoughtfully, when you are done asking them, without rushing, dismissing, or interrupting you? If you are anxious or afraid, it’s crucial to be able to share this up front so that you can be reassured with information and knowledge.
Are all of the procedures that you are interested in learning about explained in great depth, at your level of understanding? Is he tolerant of clarifying questions and additional concerns that you express?
Is there a respectful, sustained eye contact that feels natural and sincere to you? Is he present with you, emotionally and physically?
Is He Empathetic?
When you feel vulnerable, self-conscious, or anxious about your appearance and your perceived flaws, does he reassure you in a way that offers you relief?
Is there an obvious commitment to integrity and ethics in this practice? Does the doctor tailor the suggested procedures to what is right for you, at this time in your life, with honesty and candor? There should be no sense of rushing into treatments or overselling of procedures that you do not want or need. The best treatment plan is fully individualized, custom-crafted to your unique desires and dreams.
When you lay out your expectations and hopes, does he understand your motivations? Is your surgeon realistic with you about the expected outcome and the probable results of the procedure?
Are the doctor and his staff discreet? Do they respect your privacy and your dignity?
Is He Compassionate?
Have you been free to address your concerns about recovery with him? How much pain, discomfort, or swelling can you expect? Will you have to hide in your room for a long time? What’s the worst that can happen, and what should you do if it does?
Does he, or a staff member, call to check on you the night before your procedure?
Is your doctor willing to provide you with his direct phone number in case you have questions or concerns after your treatment? When you speak with him, is he relaxed, confident, and comforting?
Before Care and After Care
A successful procedural outcome and speedy healing process depend on both the skill of your surgeon and your relationship with him. You’ll be seeing a lot of each other after the treatment during follow-up visits, and perhaps additional procedures down the road. It’s important to look forward to returning to his office.
After you’ve verified the skills and credentials of the person you will choose to help create your ideal self, take as much time to confirm that this is someone who truly wants to help you put your best face forward by participating with you in an empowering doctor-patient relationship that is skin deep!