When considering plastic surgery, check your surgeon's registration on the AHPRA website, and make sure they are members of ASPS and ASAPS.
Members of ASPS and ASAPS:
- are certified by The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS).
- have completed specialist surgeon training in plastic surgery.
- operate only in accredited medical facilities.
- adhere to a strict code of ethics.
- fulfil continuing professional development requirements, including standards and innovations in patient safety.
Plastic surgery is more than cosmetic surgery.
Through their reconstructive surgery skills, Plastic Surgeons often help people get their lives back. Plastic Surgeons are trained in reconstructive procedures such as: burn, wound and trauma repair; tumour removal and cancer reconstruction; correction of birth defects and acquired deformities; hand surgery; maxillofacial and craniofacial surgery; and microsurgical reconstruction.
Through their work, plastic surgeons make a major contribution to the health of our Australian community.
Know the Difference
The importance of finding a properly trained and certified specialist surgeon to undertake your treatment cannot be stressed too much. Although the title surgeon is now protected, any surgeon can call himself or herself a cosmetic surgeon.
Choosing a doctor who's a member of the Australian Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) and Australian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS) is the first step. Members of these organisations are certified by the Board of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, are Fellows of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons and are recognised as specialist plastic surgeons by the Australian Medical Council and Medicare Australia.
What Can I Expect?
Before you have plastic surgery, you will meet with your plastic surgeon for a consultation. During the consultation, you be able to discuss your goals. Your surgeon should undertake a thorough examination and if surgery is appropriate, provide advice on the best procedure to achieve your desired results. Your plastic surgeon shoulder:
- Answer all of your questions thoroughly and clearly.
- Ask about your thoughts to recommended treatment.
- Offer alternatives, where appropriate.
- Welcome questions about your procedure and his or her professional qualifications, experience, costs and payment policies.
- Make clear the risks of surgery and possible outcomes.
- Discuss postoperative recovery with you and provide adequate post-procedure clinical care.
- Give you information about the procedure you want.
- Leave the final decision to you.
Step 1: Questions to Ask When Choosing a Plastic Surgeon
- Are you an ASPS or ASAPS member? If he or she answers "yes," you can rest assured that your surgeon is a genuine specialist in plastic surgery, has hospital privileges and only performs surgery in accredited facilities.
- Are you a Fellow of The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (FRACS), in plastic surgery?
- Do you have hospital privileges to perform this procedure? If so, at which hospitals?
- Is the surgical facility accredited?
- How many procedures of this type have you performed?
Step 2: Questions to Ask Your Plastic Surgeon
It's important to talk to your plastic surgeon about your goals and your treatment. Feel confident asking about your doctor's credentials, experience, outcomes or safety record. It is your body, your safety and your life.
- Am I a good candidate for this procedure?
- What will be expected of me to get the best results I can achieve?
- What are the risks involved with my procedure?
- How long would an average recovery period be, and what kind of help will I need during my recovery?
- Will I need to take time off work? If so, how long?