Choosing a Plastic Surgeon, Part III – Some Red Flags

(Excerpted from Dr. Peter Adamson’s book Fabulous Faces (available on and edited for our blog.)


I hope that my last two blog posts on choosing a plastic surgeon have been helpful to you. In my last entry I discussed how selecting a physician from a given specialty is important. However, it’s very important to select the physician or surgeon who has the most experience and best reputation for the particular treatments or surgery that you’re seeking.

The most important factor should be your consultation with the doctor. Having a good rapport with your doctor will make you feel more at ease with the process. You should also feel confident that he or she can provide you with what you’re seeking. If a particular physician has strong references and you’re happy with him or her, it may not be necessary to visit two or three other doctors to compare. However, if you aren’t comfortable or don’t feel that your questions have been answered, make sure to see two or three other doctors before making your decision.


There are many excellent facial plastic surgeons. With a little care and research, you’ll find the right one for you. However, plastic surgery has become a highly competitive business. Keep that in mind, and be wary of these warning signs:

Extravagant promises: The goal should be improvement, not perfection. A doctor who promises perfection is promising too much and will almost certainly be unable to deliver.

Advertising and bargain prices: Doctors can advertise their services and specialties, but be cautious about one who advertises extensively, especially if that doctor’s fees are substantially lower than those of competitors. Good plastic surgeons don’t have “specials.” Beyond that, their new patients tend to come by way of patient or doctor referrals.

The short consultation: The first visit with a plastic surgeon must be a thorough, get-to-know-you session in which both patient and doctor determine if they can work together. If you find yourself in a room viewing a video about the doctor’s services and are whisked through a brief meeting, you may want to look elsewhere.

Pressure tactics: A doctor should never pressure you to make a decision at an initial consultation.

Prescribing unwanted treatment: If the doctor encourages you to have treatments or procedures you don’t understand or don’t feel you need, make your feelings known. Be prepared to walk away if it continues.

Ignoring your interests: Some doctors may not put your best interests first. Your concerns should always take priority.

All of this may seem like a lot to consider, but it is very important to take the time to do your research and evaluate your consultation experience if the doctor-patient relationship is to proceed successfully.

Thank you again for reading my blog, and please don’t hesitate to contact my office to find out more about a cosmetic surgery consultation.




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