It is important that you find a surgeon you trust and who will provide competent advice. This is essential because you have to feel that you go into good hands, and because the result of the surgery depends heavily on his experience and knowledge.
Good sources for addresses of competent surgeons are their professional associations. Also ask your friends and acquaintances, perhaps someone has gained positive experience and can recommend a surgeon.
To find out if your surgeon is the right choice for your desired procedure, you should ask her/him a lot of questions. Following a list of questions you may ask during the first consultation:
- How long have you practiced as an aesthetic plastic surgeon? (Minimum 5 years)
- How often have you performed the planned surgery within the last 12 months? Can I see your gallery of before-and-after photos?
- May I talk to patients of yours who have had this surgery?
- In the case of implant breast reconstruction:
o What size and what form would you choose for my implants? Why?
o How will you proceed? Why?
o What surface will my implants have? Why?
o What implants do you use (manufacturer)? Why?
o How long will I have the implants?
o What are the complications and more specifically, what are your complication rates with this surgery?
- What examinations will you carry out to determine whether I can have the intervention? (A thorough preliminary examination should include questions about your medical history, existing allergies, chronic diseases, intake of anticoagulants, the tendency for increased scarring, etc.)
- What type of anesthesia will you use? Will I tolerate the anesthesia well? What can be the side effects and consequences?
- Will my health insurance cover all costs of the intervention? If not, what additional costs will I have to deal with and why?
- Can I have a look in the operating room and the recovery room?
- How many days do I have to take off? How long will it take until I will have fully regenerated?
- What aftercare is required? How often should I come for follow-up?
- Is cancer screening possible after an implantation?
- Do I have to expect any restrictions after the surgery? (for example regarding sports)
A good doctor will conduct a detailed consultation with you, study your medical history, and examine you thoroughly. He will surely and gladly show pictures of his previous patients to you, not make unrealistic promises about the result to be expected, and not push you to a quick decision. (Preparation)
Download Check-list Reconstructive Surgeon (PDF)