Does it matter if your plastic surgeon is board-certified?
While a cosmetic procedure is not a medical necessity, it can still be a life-altering event for patients. A botched surgical procedure can have unwanted repercussions for patients, leaving them feeling remorseful about the surgeon they went with.
In recent years, there has been a growing phenomenon of non-certified practitioners performing plastic surgery. In many cases, these individuals take short courses that don’t provide them with the proper credentials to carry out the operation in question. This is a dangerous trend that concerns the cosmetology community at large.
What does board certification mean?
The ‘board’ in board certification refers to the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). It is the only board to be recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties to provide certification to doctors in all plastic and reconstructive procedures. Having this certification means that the practitioner has undergone extensive training in both facial and body procedures, has been trained to handle potential emergency situations, and has demonstrated an outstanding level of technical skill and critical judgment.
The criteria for certification by the ABPS include having at least five years of approved surgical training, which includes a plastic surgery residency. There are also written and oral exams that must be passed.
Having the right training is vital
Beyond receiving training to perform plastic surgery, surgical practitioners have a strong foundation in human anatomy and physiology. This background gives plastic surgeons a better understanding of systems in the body, such as ventilation, circulation, and fluid and electrolyte balance. A surgeon must always prioritize their patient’s safety, as there is always a risk involved with any surgical procedure.
Certification is not a one-time event. It must be maintained over time. Furthermore, board-certified plastic surgeons must only work in accredited facilities, continue their education, and follow a strict code of ethics. They are highly trained in every aspect of plastic surgery, giving them an elevated level of expertise.
The importance of board certification lies in the fact that most state laws permit all licensed physicians to call themselves plastic surgeons even if they haven’t received the relevant training. What makes things confusing is that many of these practitioners will claim that they are ‘board certified,’ but the certification they have is something entirely unrelated to the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
Why choose Dr. Halaas?
Dr. Yael Halaas has distinguished herself as among the top female plastic surgeons in NYC, delivering expert care in a state-of-the-art setting. She is double-board-certified by both the American Board of Otolaryngology and the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. Due to her considerable expertise, she has been featured as a guest speaker on popular programs such as Dr. Oz and on Fox News and Telemundo. Dr. Halaas has a multicultural background and is bilingual in English and Spanish, allowing her to connect with all patients who come through her doors.
What is the takeaway?
Plastic surgery is a serious matter, and receiving the best care possible is of the utmost importance. Having board certification is just the bare minimum of requirements, as anyone without it may not have received proper training in surgical procedures. Patients who choose a non-certified practitioner run the risk of experiencing life-threatening complications during or after the procedure. When it comes to surgery, it is incredibly important to prioritize the quality of work over cost.