Dr. Menachof, MD, FACS has performed thousands of facial plastic surgery procedures in over 20 years of experience. He has been recognized as a Fellow by multiple academies, named one of America’s Top Facial Plastic Surgeons continually since 2003 and is featured in multiple national publications.
There are plenty of plastic surgeons out there offering top-of-the-line facial procedures and innovative techniques to give you the best results possible. How do you know which one is right for you?
Here are some helpful questions to ask potential providers as you start to search for a plastic surgeon to perform your desired facial procedure.
1. Do you specialize in facial plastic surgery?
Look for a specialized facial plastic surgeon. Statistically, 90% of plastic surgery performed in the United States is breast augmentation and liposuction. This means that most general plastic surgeons spend less than 10% of their time performing facial procedures. Facial plastic surgeons, however, spend 100% of their time on the face and neck area, mastering the skills and techniques required to produce beautiful and natural-looking results.
2. What is your experience with _________ procedure?
Experience is everything. Most facial plastic surgeries are technically difficult. Rhinoplasty, for example, takes close to 1,000 procedures before a surgeon finally understands the nuances to produce a great result. Look for a facial plastic surgeon that has extensive and documented experience performing the procedure you are interested in.
3. Do you use and stay educated on innovative plastic surgery practices?
A little innovation goes a long way. There are new techniques and technology in facial plastic surgery developing all of the time and these methods can help provide better results. Look for a surgeon who is willing to seek out education and try new, proven methods to give you the best outcome possible.
4. Can I see your before and after photos?
Choose someone with your taste. The way you define attractiveness shapes how you see plastic surgery results. If you want natural-looking, healthy results, choose a plastic surgeon whose aesthetic judgment aligns with yours. Look at before and after photos to determine if you like the results a particular plastic surgeon has achieved with other patients. If you don’t like the results you see, select a different surgeon.
Find a doctor who will listen. Far too often, patients have to seek a second opinion because they are unhappy with previous results. Typically, the results are actually good, but the surgeon didn’t really listen to what their patient wanted. Your facial plastic surgeon should be asking you questions such as: Why are you here? What would you like to change? What results will make you happiest in the end? Remember, this journey is about achieving the results you want. Find someone who will listen to what you are saying and prioritize the issues that are bothering you the most.
6. Will you help me stay focused on the bigger picture?
Find someone who considers the face as a whole. It can be easy to become obsessed with little details when it comes to facial imperfections. As you look at yourself in the mirror, you concentrate only on the one, tiny things that isn’t quite right. In these cases, it’s helpful to have a surgeon that can help you see the bigger picture. For example, if you keep trying to get rid of that little bit of excess upper eyelid skin, you might start to look odd and unnatural. A good surgeon can be your best ally in knowing when to perform a procedure, and when not to.
7. Will you tell me no if a procedure isn’t right for me?
Honesty is a virtue. We have all seen people who have had too much plastic surgery, and we have all wondered why no one told them no after it became detrimental to their appearance. The right facial plastic surgeon that will be honest with you and will tell you no if something isn’t going to look natural or if a procedure just isn’t a good option for you.
8. What happens if my procedure doesn’t go as planned?
Find a surgeon committed to your happiness. The majority of the time, facial procedures go perfectly according to plan. On the rare occasion that they do not, you need to know that your facial plastic surgeon is committed to seeing it all the way through until you are happy with the face you see reflected in the mirror. Choose a surgeon that you trust will be there for you, providing you with the very best outcome possible.
The success of the final look often depends on the recovery process after surgery, so be sure to follow instructions from the doctor to ensure proper healing. The healing process looks different based on your procedure, so ask specifically what to expect after a facelift, for example, or after a rhinoplasty.
This post was originally posted in September 2015 and has been republished in 2020 with updated information.