Rachael Ray Presents the Secrets of Plastic Surgery

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The number of people choosing to have plastic surgery has soared in recent years – it is now a $10 billion a year industry. Technological advances have increased the number of options, but have also increased the number of unskilled practitioners offering services. Dr. Anthony Youn, a Board-certified plastic surgeon in Troy, Michigan, appeared this morning on the Rachael Ray Show to present the ins-and-outs of choosing the right plastic surgeon and how to get the most for your money.

The medical specialty of plastic surgery encompasses both cosmetic and reconstructive surgery, however most people associate the term with improvement or enhancement to their appearance (the cosmetic side). In 2007, nearly 12 million cosmetic procedures were performed in the United States with the most common being breast augmentation, liposuction, nasal surgery, eyelid surgery, and abdominoplasty (tummy tuck). Non-invasive cosmetic procedures commonly performed include chemical peels to minimize skin imperfections and laser skin resurfacing.

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Before moving forward with any procedure, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons recommends first checking the credentials of the person performing the procedure you wish to have done. Understand the terminology – a cosmetic surgeon is not the same as a plastic surgeon. Dr. Youn and the ASPS recommend choosing a physician that is a member because that ensures at least 6 years of surgical training and experience with a minimum of 3 years of additional training in all plastic surgery procedures. The doctor will also be board certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery (in the US) or the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (in Canada).

The second step is to understand your options. For facial treatments for example, a typical deep laser treatment costs between $2000 and $3000, but Dr. Youn says that you can often get similar results for a third of the price with a chemical peel. Some procedures may not even be necessary. A non-surgical brow lift – often just a waxing by an esthetician – can elevate the brow for just a fraction of the price of a surgical procedure.

Should you choose to proceed with a surgical procedure, make sure the physician spends time during the consultation explaining the surgery to your satisfaction. The amount of time the doctor spends with you is often indicative of the time he or she spends performing the surgery and taking care of you afterwards.

Above all, make sure you get a good feeling from your plastic surgeon. If you don’t feel comfortable, or if word of mouth is not completely positive, find another doctor. Dr. Youn says, “You never regret the surgery you didn’t do. You only regret the surgery you did but shouldn’t have done.”

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