The most important thing to do after a consultation for plastic surgery is to reflect on what you learned through the process. Firstly, you should evaluate how your experience compared to other consultations if you have been on multiples. Everything from the appointment scheduling process to your treatment by the members of the surgeon’s staff and the environment that the consultation took place matters. Secondly, it is likely you will have been presented with a lot of information about your cosmetic concern, what treatments the surgeon has recommended for you, and why. If there is anything still unclear, you should plan to return to the office for another visit or have a call with the surgeon/ clinical staff member to reinforce information from the consultation.
Make a Decision
Based on your reflection, you will potentially decide which surgeon best suits your needs. It is possible you may decide not to have surgery at all. If you are still unsure, it may be worth requesting to speak with a consenting patient from a surgeon you are considering to hear their first-person perspective of what the experience was like. This may be a deciding factor in your ultimate decision. Another large factor in the decision-making process is cost. Every surgeon will quote a different amount based on their experience and the type of practice they run. While cost is important, you should weigh it against everything you learned during the consultation process before deciding.
Once you have decided who will perform your surgery, the next step is to reach out to their coordinator and select a date. Many surgeons have specific operative days of the week and book these days out well in advance. You can expect to wait 1-6 months on average from the time of your consultation to the date of surgery. Not only are the surgeon’s schedules restrictive, but there are items you will need to complete on your own before the surgery takes place. These are detailed below.
Each surgeon and each unique surgery may have preoperative requirements that you will be responsible for prior to your surgery appointment. Breast surgery, for example, may require mammography to establish a baseline. Most surgeries requiring general anesthesia will require a visit to your primary care doctor for bloodwork and an EKG to ensure you are at minimal risk for complications. If you have any significant contributory medical/surgical history, you may also be required to see a specialist before surgery. Any required pre-op visit will produce a report that your doctor will need to review to make sure you are cleared. You can speak with your surgeon’s coordinator at the time of your consultation to get a better idea of any requirements prior to determining an ideal date so that you are well prepared.