This can be an emotional time filled with apprehension. You need a surgeon and clinic staff who are supportive during all phases of the transformation process. Spoiler alert! There is no one set of criteria that will guarantee you get the best plastic surgeon for the job. Each patient has a different goal and different priorities – from quality to cost.
Don’t get discouraged. There are still a core set of criteria that will help guide you to the surgeon that is right for you and your procedure. Ultimately, the final decision is yours and you can takes steps to put a stop to the entire process at any point if you feel you need to re-evaluate your decisions.
Finding the Best Plastic Surgeon in Toronto
Now, here are few basic considerations when choosing a plastic surgeon:
- Is the surgeon in good standing with the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons? Check with your provincial college of physicians and surgeons to see whether the surgeon is licensed and whether disciplinary action has been taken against him/her.
- Is the surgeon is a member of the Canadian Society of Plastic Surgeons? Membership to the CSPS ensures that your surgeon has the proper training required to perform Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.
- Verify credentials and training. “board-certified.” is not as impressive as it may sound. Only the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons certifies physicians and surgeons in medical specialties in Canada.
- Surgical Procedure Experience. How often has the surgeon performed the procedure you want? What is the probability of complication?
- Hospital facility available to the surgeon? Does your surgeon have hospital admitting privileges? Preparing for the possibility of complications after surgery is prudent. Don’t be afraid to call the hospital to verify the information. Any operating facility within the surgeon’s office should be certified.
- Insurance Coverage. Ensure the surgeon has medical malpractice insurance through the Canadian Medical Protective Association.
- Does the surgeon try to upsell you? Stay away from a surgeon that tries to persuade you to agree to additional procedures; regardless of price. Stay focused on your original intentions.
- Guarantee results. Guarantees are not possible. Run away from the surgeon who guarantees results and/or minimizes the risks. And, be wary of those who provide overly optimistic recovery time numbers.
- Qualified support staff. Are the nurses, anesthesiologists and other support staff properly certified and experienced?
- What’s the corrective action process? Have the surgeon explain exactly what will happen if complications arise or if additional surgeries are needed. Be thorough when communicating with your surgeon to ensure aligned expectations. Read the patient consent form carefully before signing it and have your surgeon explain any portion that is not clear to you.
- Put quality at a high priority. I suggest that one of your highest goals should be a high-quality result. In my opinion, if you find a surgeon that is a bit of a travel inconvenience but will give you exactly what you want, go with him or her. The inconvenience will be temporary and maybe a little more costly. The result will be with you for the rest of your life!
- What type of surgeon? Familiarize yourself with the definitions and determine if you are speaking with a plastic surgeon or a cosmetic surgeon.
- Feel good about your selection. If you are not comfortable with your selection at any point, do not rationalize or make excuses. Move on, continue your search and interview all Toronto plastic surgeons if you have to, to find the surgeon for you.
At this point, if all went well, you are intimately familiar with your issue, your realistic goals, have great expectations and have a fantastic surgeon, and staff, that will help you through it all. If all goes well, you will arrive at the end satisfied and happier than ever.