Plastic Surgery – An Overview

Plastic Surgery : An Overview

Cosmetic Plastic Surgery is performed to help people by improving their aesthetic look while Reconstructive Plastic Surgery is used to correct a deformity or injury. Procedures that usually fall under the heading of Cosmetic Plastic Surgery would be procedures such as blepharoplasty, facelift, necklift, brow lift, breast augmentation, abdominoplasty and liposuction. Procedures considered to be the Reconstructive Plastic Surgery would be correcting a Cleft Lip and Palate, Breast Reconstruction following a Mastectomy and breast cancer, scar revision and burn treatments.  At Partington Plastic Surgery and Laser Center, we provide a broad spectrum of procedures from both categories and accept a wide range of insurances.

In the world of Plastic Surgery, there are certain benchmarks attained by Surgeons who have more education and/or experience and who have excelled in their field that you can look for to help ensure you are choosing the best Surgeon for you.

Some of these accolades to consider are:

  • Board Certification with the ABPS (American Board of Plastic Surgery®)

The Criteria to become Board Certified with the ABPS includes:

  • Graduate of an accredited Medical School
  • Complete at least 5 years of surgical training following medical school with a minimum of 2 years of plastic surgery residency training
  • Pass comprehensive oral and written exams
  • Board Certification with the ASPS (American Society of Plastic Surgeons)

The Criteria to become Board Certified with the ASPS includes:

  • Be Certified by the ABPS or in Canada by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons in Canada®
  • Complete continuing medical education including patient safety each year
  • Perform surgery in accredited, state-licensed or Medicare-certified surgical facilities

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) is the largest plastic surgery specialty organization in the world. Founded in 1931, the society is composed of board-certified plastic surgeons who perform cosmetic and reconstructive surgery.

The mission of ASPS is to advance quality care to plastic surgery patients by encouraging high standards of training, ethics, physician practice and research in plastic surgery. The society advocates for patient safety, such as requiring its members to operate in accredited surgical facilities that have passed a rigorous external review of equipment and procedures. The society works with the Plastic Surgery Foundation (PSF), founded in 1948, which supports research, international volunteer programs and visiting professor programs.

Only members of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons may display the ASPS Member Surgeon logo. This symbol of excellence in plastic surgery is what to look for when deciding on a surgeon. It tells you that you are choosing a physician who is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery or by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada ­ important credentials.

Membership in the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS):
The American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons was founded in 1967, is the leading professional organization of board-certified plastic surgeons that specialize in cosmetic plastic surgery.  With members in the U.S, Canada, and many other countries , The Aesthetic Society is at the forefront of innovation in aesthetic plastic surgery around the world.

How to identify an ASAPS member:
Only members of the American Society of Plastic Surgery may display the ASAPS logo which represents the Mark of Distinction in Cosmetic Plastic Surgery®. ASAPS member-surgeons are certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery® or The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada®.

In most states, any licensed physician may perform plastic surgery without being board certified in plastic surgery.  Just because a doctor is board-certified does not mean that he or she is certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery® (ABPS)

Plastic Surgery in Today’s World 

As time goes on, more and more people are choosing plastic surgery to enhance areas on their body and face and/or to fight the aging process.  Additionally, while Plastic Surgery is still considered expensive and a luxury purchase, it is much more attainable by the average person financially.  As a consequence to these things, Plastic Surgery is much more talked about openly and socially accepted than in times past.

Is Plastic Surgery right for you?

Many thousands of people have Plastic Surgery as well as non-surgical medical treatments to enhance their appearance every day and while it is more socially accepted than ever before and the majority of people who choose cosmetic surgical and non-surgical treatments are happy with their decision and their results, there are important things to consider when making such a decision:

  • If you are having a surgical procedure, it is real surgery. There is typically discomfort and recovery associated with any surgery, cosmetic or otherwise. You must decide if the recovery and pain are a worthwhile trade- off for the procedure you are seeking and the anticipated results.
  • You must have realistic expectations. Even the most talented surgeon can’t create perfection.  Additionally, the patients general health, genetic make-up, pre-existing shape/symmetry and the patients pre and post-operative self-care all play a role in the results of your procedure.
  • It is essential that you are in a good emotional state.  Some things that may make someone a non-ideal candidate include:
  • People with mood disorders or who have erratic mood swings
  • People with diagnosed body dysmorphic disorder
  • People who use recreational drugs at all or use prescription drugs alcohol excessively
  • People who have had several other surgeries that they were not happy with
  • People in treatment for depression or other mental illness
  • It is imperative that the choice to have a procedure done is a choice made for yourself and not for someone else.  Don’t ever have surgery to please someone else or to fit an ideal that has been set by society or a social circle
  • Be prepared to pay for your surgery. For most, it is a worthwhile investment but it is just that: an investment. Most often, cosmetically oriented plastic surgery is not covered by insurance as it is elective in nature.  Understanding that plastic surgery is an investment and planning financially for it can help you have a much better over-all experience
  • Be at least 18 years of age or have parents’ consent.  It is essential for many plastic surgery procedures that certain growth milestones have been achieved. If you are a candidate for a specific procedure and you are under 18, you will need your parents’ consent and, possibly an approval to move forward from your Primary Care Physician if requested by the attending Plastic Surgeon.
  • If you have health issues such as high blood pressure or diabetes or take medications for certain conditions, your Plastic Surgeon may agree to perform your procedure with certain stipulations and/or he/she may request an approval for surgery from your Primary Care Physician

What Can Plastic Surgery accomplish?

Now that we have gotten the reality check out of the way, let’s talk about just some of the more popular things that can be accomplished by a skilled Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.

What happens during the consultation?

The consultation is an excellent time for you to express what you are trying to accomplish, when you think you would like to have your procedure and get all of your questions answered.  Typically, you will be asked to fill out paperwork.  This paperwork consists of questions about your health history, previous surgeries and any medications you take.  You will be examined and measured and a discussion of what can and can’t be accomplished will take place.  Timing, anticipated recovery and risks associated with the surgery are discussed in detail.  Alternative procedures will also be discussed.  Photographs will be taken for your medical record and, finally, financial considerations and scheduling will be talked about assuming you are a candidate for your chosen procedure.

At Partington Plastic Surgery Center, your comfort is of utmost priority to us. We are honored that you have chosen to consider us for your procedure and we feel an obligation to thoroughly educate you so that you can make the best decision for yourself.


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