Skip to main content
Douglas A. Taranow, DO, FACOS

New York, NY

10 Questions You Should Ask Your Surgeon Before Having Plastic Surgery


Posted June 23, 2015 in Plastic Surgeon

It should go without saying that the decision to undergo plastic surgery is an important one, but it’s even more important to make sure you go into things thoroughly prepared. Be sure to ask your surgeon each of the following questions, as well as any others you may have.

1. Are you Board Certified?

Find out whether or not your surgeon is board certified. Board certification is a very important indication of whether your surgeon has not only demonstrated the competency and level of excellence required to achieve his or her certification, but also values integrity and adherence to standards of quality and safety.

2. How many times have you performed this procedure?

You want a doctor with extensive experience performing the procedure you’re considering – someone that’s gotten that operation down to an absolute science, not a “newbie” that’s still getting the hang of things and learning the ropes.

3. What can I personally expect for results?

Make sure you understand up front what it would be realistic to expect as far as your results, specific to your body. Be honest with your surgeon about what you’re hoping for and ask all the questions you need in order to have a good idea of what your results will actually be like.

4. May I see some before and after pictures of previous patients?

A great plastic surgeon is proud to show a prospective patient photos demonstrating the results from previous patients on whom he or she has performed that same procedure. Don’t be afraid to clarify or confirm that you’re seeing actual examples of this particular surgeon’s work. Also, be sure to ask any questions you might think of while looking at photos of the patients and their specific results.

5. May I have some references to previous patients?

Follow up by asking for about 3-6 references to patients that have had the same procedure done. This is a great way to get some insight both into the doctor’s skill and what you can expect from the procedure itself. Many people who have experienced great results with plastic surgery are more than thrilled to share their experience with others who may be considering it for themselves.

6. Can you show me exactly what this will cost?

Make sure you know exactly what you’ll be responsible for financially, when payments will be required, and what payment forms or financing methods are available with that particular plastic surgeon.

7. What are the risks associated with this procedure?

Risk factors can vary greatly from procedure to procedure and patient to patient. Although serious complications are not incredibly common with plastic surgery, you still need to know exactly what yours are going to be before you make a decision.

8. What is the complication rate with this procedure?

A surgeon can’t breach patient confidentiality, but he or she may be able to generally discuss any complications that have happened in the past and how they were addressed.

9. How long will it take me to recover?

Most plastic surgery patients will recover within a couple of weeks. However, this time frame can vary depending on what’s being done, as well as on the individual patient. Knowing what you’re in for up front will help you determine how much help you’ll need, how much time to take off of work, and so forth.

10. When can I return to work?

Having recovered from a procedure may or may not mean you’re entirely ready to go back to work as usual. This depends largely what you do for a living in addition to your individual health situation. Make sure you discuss your recovery fully with your surgeon, and if you have any concerns relating to returning to work, be sure and ask them!

New York Plastic Surgeon Dr. Taranow is happy to answer questions and ease your concerns about plastic surgery. Set up your consultation today by calling 212.772.2100, or visit our contact page to get started!