In preparation for surgery of any kind, it’s wise to do just what you’re doing now: research. The Internet is an invaluable resource, but when it comes to medical information, it sometimes creates more confusion than clarification. One question I often get from patients considering cosmetic surgery concerns the difference between plastic and cosmetic surgeons. What’s the difference?
The Cosmetic vs. Plastic Distinction
Cosmetic surgery is focused on aesthetics, while plastic surgery aims to reconstruct facial and body parts that are defective or non-functional.
- opens in a new windowCosmetic surgery is a very specialized discipline that focuses on improving a person’s appearance with various surgical procedures.
- Plastic surgery is a branch of medicine that aims to reconstruct physical deformities resulting from birth defects, diseases such as cancer, and traumatic events like fires or car accidents.
Cosmetic Surgeons: Training and Qualification
Cosmetic surgeons often come from a wide array of diverse specialized residency backgrounds because there is no medical residency specifically designed for cosmetic surgery. Each cosmetic surgeon brings to his or her practice not only expertise from another specialized field, such as general surgery or dermatology, but also the additional benefit of extensive, concentrated training in the many procedures that comprise cosmetic surgery.
While you may hear a lot about board-certification in plastic surgery, this credential does not necessarily convey mastery of the field of cosmetic surgery. After 5 years of General Surgery training, I completed an elective year of specialized training with the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery, which is an additional yearlong fellowship focused entirely of cosmetic surgery of the face and body. This is cosmetic-specific training that many plastic surgeons simply do not have.
If you are considering a cosmetic procedure, look closely at the doctor’s credentials in addition to other factors, such as the results they have achieved in before and after photos, patient satisfaction, pricing, and your overall comfort and rapport with the doctor.
Dr. Joseph J. Castellano is a native Floridian who grew up in the Tampa Bay area. During medical school and his 5 years of training in General Surgery, Dr. Castellano developed a strong interest in Cosmetic Surgery. He followed his residency training with an elective year of specialized training with the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery. From 2010-2011, he completed a fellowship in Indiana focused entirely of cosmetic surgery of the face and body. During his fellowship, he received specialized training in facial rejuvenation, breast augmentation, abdominoplasty, and body contouring. Dr. Castellano received his board certification from the American College of Surgeons in 2010.
Dr. Castellano focuses on breast augmentation, abdominoplasty, liposuction, facelift, and eyelid rejuvenation. Additionally, he operates on numerous skin cancers, scar revisions, spider veins, and specializes in the management of aging skin with chemical peels and laser resurfacing.
opens in a new windowRequest a consultation to meet with Dr. Castellano and learn more about all his practice has to offer.