Thinking of traveling for plastic surgery? You’re not alone! Plastic surgery tourism is fast becoming a safe way to get access to the best plastic surgeon without having to be limited by where you live.
Plastic surgery is such a life changing event that you want to make sure you find the best doctor, as well as a doctor that you feel comfortable with. Like getting a tattoo, these results are permanent – and there is no price on peace of mind.
When Should You Consider Traveling for Plastic Surgery?
Traveling for this kind of procedure is not for everyone. Check your local area first, do a search online, and visit the offices of any doctors you are considering. At the very least, you should consider traveling for plastic surgery if there are no accredited surgeons in your area that you feel comfortable with.
You should also ensure that you find a doctor that is accredited, recommended, and reviewed. One aspect of plastic surgery tourism is the price, and for some that is what matters most. Though we agreed that money can be a major hurdle to getting the neck lift you want, or the breast augmentation you have been eyeing – we do recommend you always look for the best surgeon above all else.
There are great surgeons overseas that may do your procedure for less, but you risk finding someone who charges less for lower quality work. If you are having a major surgery like a face lift, consider expertise before you consider price.
How to Find the Best Plastic Surgeon in A Different State
- Look for State/Country Certifications
Find a board certified plastic surgeon in the city, state, or country you are thinking of traveling to. If you are looking for plastic surgery in the U.S., you can visit the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and search for potential surgeons there.
For international plastic surgeons, you can start at International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, or simply look up any surgeon you were considering.
- Accreditation and Residency
The more accreditation your potential plastic surgeon has, the better. Look to see if the doctor is a member of local and international plastic surgery associations.
Also look at where they studied and search that school online. It shouldn’t take you long to get a sense of this doctor’s experience.
Look at reviews! You can see reviews on Real Self, Google, and Facebook. Positive reviews and negative reviews can be emotional, and sometimes slightly unreliable. So, take a look at the middle of the road reviews: the 3/5 reviews and the 6/10 reviews. Those might have some interesting insight.
- Call and Speak to Them!
Ask if they are used to getting plastic surgery patients from out of town; they may have resources for traveling for plastic surgery.
Ask who you are speaking to and get a good feel for them. Ask them what they like most about the doctor, and what they would recommend in terms of traveling plans. Get a sense of how happy they are at the clinic.
- Consider a Visit
Schedule a visit if you can. Go to the offices and have an in-person consultation with the doctor. You’ve likely had a consultation through Skype, so though this will be a follow up meeting. You can use this time to scope out the operating room and get a real sense of the staff and the doctor.
Making Travel Plans
Great! You’ve found a plastic surgeon worth traveling to. Now let’s make our plans:
- Pack for Comfort
Pack a few creature comforts from home! After surgery, you’ll want to be as comfortable as possible. This means you’ll want to have your own comforts close at hand. Pack clothes that are easy to take on and off, special pillows, and sun protection (this is important to avoid scarring).
- Where Will You Stay During Recovery?
Are you staying at a hotel close by, at an Airbnb, or accommodation recommendation by the physician? We recommend that patients who are traveling for plastic surgery avoid traveling home for at least one week after surgery. It’s important to allow your body time to recovery and to get the rest needed.
Infographic added to the article on November 11, 2020.
Dr. Zoran Potparic is a board certified plastic surgeon in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, committed to performing surgery of the highest quality, safety, and artistry. He applies his years of global study and research, as well as more than 30 years of hands-on experience performing reconstructive and cosmetic surgery for patients coming from all over the United States.