Surgery Checklist

With cosmetic surgery more accessible than ever before, it can be all too easy to rush into having a procedure without careful consideration.

It is generally a bad idea to decide on the surgery because someone else thinks it is a good idea, or someone you know has just had a ‘nose job’ or ‘tummy tuck’. Your motivation should be personal and you should try and remain as objective as possible.

Before making contact with a clinic or surgeon, you really need to think about why you are considering the surgery.

  • Will the procedure make you feel more confident, or more attractive?
  • Are you being pressurised into having surgery by family, friends or even society as a whole?
  • Have you discussed your intentions with family and friends?
  • Do you know exactly what is involved in achieving the results you want?
  • Can you afford the procedure without incurring an unmanageable level of debt?

If you feel comfortable about the answers you can give to these questions, then you should look for a reputable clinic or surgeon to discuss your intended surgery.

It is always a good idea to choose on the basis of reputation rather than price. Make sure the surgeon you choose is on the specialist’s register with the General Medical Council (GMC). You can start your search for a surgeon with other professional organisations such as the Royal College of Surgeons, the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS), or the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS). Plastic surgeons who have trained in the UK will belong to at least one of these bodies.

A good surgeon will want to have a consultation with you prior to the actual day of surgery. This gives both of you the chance to discuss your requirements and establish how realistic your expectations are of the outcome. The surgeon should explain in detail what the procedure will entail and how long it is likely to take. Be sure that you can answer the next set of questions positively before you proceed.

  • Has the surgeon made contact with your GP?
  • Are they fully aware of your medical history, including any allergies or reactions to anaesthetics?
  • Have you been made fully aware of the risks involved in undergoing the procedure and advised as to how close the outcome is likely to be to your expectations?
  • Have you been able to verify the surgeon’s qualifications and are they experienced in your particular type of surgery?
  • Have you been offered a ‘cooling off’ period? This means that if you change your mind within a set period of time, you are entitled to cancel and get back any money you may have paid as a deposit.
  • Have you been advised as to what aftercare is available and are you satisfied with it?

You should feel happy with all the information you have been given and be aware of how long it will take you to recover. Most importantly, you should feel comfortable with your surgeon.