As a plastic surgeon, my patients usually seek one of two kinds of treatments: a reconstructive procedure, to restore the face or body to its original state after suffering damage from accident or disease; or a cosmetic or aesthetic procedure, where the goal is to improve appearance.

After more than 25 years of practicing plastic surgery, I cannot emphasize enough the importance of making an informed decision about your choice of surgeon and about your choice of procedure. To do this, you need to become what I call an “educated patient” which means to acquire the knowledge you need to make a decision that will provide you with the best surgical result.

There are three basic factors that may determine the outcome of your surgery:

1) Your choice of a plastic surgeon

This is the single most important decision in achieving the result you desire. Training, experience and that intangible sometimes referred to as artistic talent, are all crucial factors. Check the credentials of any doctor that you are considering very carefully (see The Educated Patient on this site for help). Your health and your appearance will depend on your choice.

2) The procedure used to achieve your goal

There are many options offered by many different surgeons, and it is easy to become confused. You hear about “new, faster, less down time” treatments with catch phrases like “bandaid face lift”. While these marketing phrases are appealing, it is important for you to know exactly what treatment modalities are available, which are time-proven, and what you can realistically expect from the choice you make.

3) The relationship that you establish with your plastic surgeon

The essence of that relationship is communication. It is important that you communicate your objectives to the surgeon and that the surgeon listens and understands them. It is also important that the surgeon thoroughly explains the procedures you are considering. To achieve a successful outcome, you must communicate well with each other, and feel comfortable with each other.

In my practice, I emphasize to the patient that we are going to embark on a journey together. It is important that we have the same destination and the same goal. The patient will invest the time to become fully educated about the procedure and will do everything preoperatively and postoperatively in order to achieve the best possible result. I will use the many years of medical training and 25+ years of plastic surgery experience to achieve the result we both seek. The patient and I become partners, and like all good partners, work together to reach our mutual goals.

If you are considering plastic surgery, you should be seeking complete and accurate information so you can make an informed decision. Please let my office know if we can help in any way.

© Copyright - Dr. Robert E. Zaworski. All rights reserved.
Robert E. Zaworski, M.D. is Board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. The American Board of Plastic Surgery provides certification for surgeons who are trained and specialize in Plastic Surgery and is recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialities which has set the standards for excellence in Medical Specialties in the United States since 1933.
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