If you are considering a plastic surgery procedure, such as a tummy tuck or breast augmentation, choosing the right surgeon for your procedure is likely the most important step. While you want to find a surgeon you are comfortable with and who has experience with the procedure you are choosing, you have likely heard the term board-certified mentioned in your research. But what is a board-certified plastic surgeon and does board certification really make a difference when it comes to choosing a plastic surgeon?
Why Qualifications Matter in Elective Healthcare
When you have health concerns and your primary physician refers you to a cardiologist, for example, chances are you don’t give their choice a second thought. You assume that your provider has confidence in the specialist’s ability to provide care and that, if your insurance company covers the provider, they have to be properly qualified, right?
While you may ask your healthcare provider for a referral to a cosmetic plastic surgeon, they might not be the best source of an opinion. The fact is that cosmetic procedures are elective, and the unfortunate reality is that any medical doctor can call themselves a “cosmetic surgeon” and perform these procedures. So you need to ask more questions about qualifications and experience.
What Does Board Certification Mean?
To become board certified in plastic surgery, a doctor must complete specific education and training requirements in the specialty, pass specific exams, and demonstrate mastery. In the case of plastic surgeons and the American Board of Plastic Surgery, board certification means that surgeons complete at least six years or surgical training after medical school, including at least three years in plastic surgery. In addition, they must pass comprehensive oral and written exams as well as commit to regular continuing education in their field in order to stay up to date on the latest techniques and medical care.
Check Board Certification Carefully
Unfortunately, almost all states allow any licensed physician to perform cosmetic surgery, even without experience or specialized training. Do you really want someone trained in dermatology, gynecology or family medicine performing a cosmetic procedure for you? Without the specialized training that accompanies board certification in plastic surgery, you may not be getting the best possible care and results. This is why choosing a board-certified plastic surgeon is so important.
If you are considering a surgical procedure, Dr. Scot Martin is a board-certified plastic surgeon and brings with him years of specialized training and experience. Call 575-521-7111 today to schedule a consultation and learn how Dr. Martin can help you achieve your plastic surgery goals.