When talking about choosing a plastic surgeon, I often hear people say 'I don't care if they are a nice person, I just want the "best" technical surgeon'. Or, "I don't want to be their friend, I just want them to do a good job". They can be an a$*^hole as long as they are the best. I could not disagree more.
Yes, you obviously want a skilled surgeon with both a good education and training, but you also want someone with a heart and a soul. You want someone who has good judgment and is kind. You want someone who is your advocate, who is honest and who you trust. This all may seem like a lot to ask for - but it's not. It's simply necessary.
Choosing a plastic surgeon should encompass a combination of evaluating their skills and assessing your connection with them. I would argue to have a positive experience surgically you need to trust your surgeon and you need to connect to them on a human level. It doesn't mean you need to be best friends but you need to respect more than just their skill set.
Do you feel that no matter what, your surgeon will do what's best for you? Do you feel they respect you and value you as a human being? Do they actually listen to you? Do you feel safe? All these questions are critically important in choosing a surgeon.
In terms of skills - you want to make sure their education is at a high level and the same goes for their training. You want to make sure they are Board Certified in their area of Expertise - and that that Board actually means something (for example the Board of Cosmetic Surgery is not a legitimate and high level Board). And you want to make sure they have respect in their field and their patients have good things to say about them.
Just because someone has a pretty website and has patient testimonials does not mean they are awesome. If you have doubts find out if you can talk to a patient who has had the same procedure you are having!
Your surgeon should place your interests above all else. You must trust that they will do what's best for you and that you will be their priority. They need to do what's best for you and you only.
I think you have to be able to connect to your surgeon and talk to them, express your concerns and fears.
When your goals are aligned with your surgeon's, you will have a positive outcome and a positive experience. Surgery can be scary and you want to make not just the technical outcome a "success" but you want the process and recovery to be a success as well.
Don't sell yourself short. There are surgeons who are excellent and kind. I highly suggest you find that powerful combination. You deserve that.
~Dr. Alexes Hazen