The internet is filled with “how to” guides teaching you to do everything from changing the filters in your air conditioner to patching a tire on the side of the road. These are important instructions, helping many people get through high-stakes situations. But what is often missing is what not to do.
When picking a plastic surgeon for breast augmentation, the do’s and don’ts are equally important. Your surgeon is easily the most crucial factor in getting the results you want from your augmentation, followed closely by your adherence to aftercare instructions. And even if you do all the right things, if you also get tripped up on the wrong ones, you might find yourself dissatisfied with your experience.
So, what are the mistakes you need to avoid? Here are some key tips on what not to do when choosing a plastic surgeon for your breast augmentation.
Don’t Get Confused by “Cosmetic” Surgeons
Board certification in plastic surgery shows that your surgeon has specialized experience and training. Why does this matter? Because there are also “cosmetic” surgeons who offer breast augmentations, and they may have absolutely no specialized training in breast or plastic surgery techniques. While these doctors might have some additional training and certifications, this isn’t always the case. Anyone who is a licensed physician can perform cosmetic procedures and advertise themselves as a cosmetic surgeon.
Don’t Settle for a Single Opinion
As a rule, you should speak with at least 2 to 3 surgeons before selecting one and scheduling your breast augmentation. In fact, this is a rule for medical procedures across the board. Multiple perspectives are always a good thing to have.
It is tempting to stop with just one if you get the answers you want and feel comfortable with the doctor. While this might truly be the right surgeon for you, if they are, there is nothing lost in sitting down with another couple of doctors to see what they have to say.
Don’t Get Pushed Around
If a surgeon is aggressively trying to sell you on additional procedures, this is a bad sign. It’s best in this case to look for someone else. Working with a surgeon should never feel like buying a used car.
However, a well-meaning surgeon might suggest additional procedures they honestly feel are beneficial to you. It is important to recognize the difference. If you feel like you are being offered objective guidance, lean into it. If you feel like you are being pushed around, leave.
Don’t Make Decisions Based on Price Alone
We’ve all heard that you get what you pay for. And we all know it’s true. Still, with something as expensive as breast augmentation, it is very, very tempting to look for doctors offering the cheapest rates. This will almost always be a mistake.
The cost of a breast augmentation includes many items, including the overhead for the doctor, their skills and experience and even the quality of the facility where the surgery will be performed. The lowest rates are usually offered by inexperienced doctors who might be cutting corners and likely operating in lower-end facilities.
Don’t Focus on the Wrong Results
When you sit down with a plastic surgeon, you will likely get the chance to look through a portfolio of before and after photos, showing the quality of work they perform. This is essential to look at, but make sure you are focusing on the right examples.
Many surgeons excel in certain surgeries while they are just average in others. So, first off, look at breast augmentation results over any others. Then, make sure you look for those who are at a similar starting point as yourself and ended up with the results you are wanting to achieve. And don’t just look at the breasts; the shoulders and rib cage also factor into how your results will appear.
Don’t Skip over Risk and Recovery
Breast augmentation is a relatively safe procedure, but all surgeries inherently come with risks, and after, they always have a recovery period. These are the unpleasant sides of getting work done. However, they must be spoken about.
Bring up these topics with your prospective surgeons. See how open they are about them. If they are unwilling to get into these topics in depth, it is a sign that you might not want to work with them. If they are happy to talk about them honestly, it means they are likely going to be transparent with you in general.
Dr. David Dellinger at Elysian Plastic Surgery in Austin is a double board-certified plastic surgeon who maintains a practice focus on body contouring surgery, breast enhancement and facial rejuvenation.