It is very important to do thorough research before choosing your surgeon. All doctors registered in the UK should be listed by the General Medical Council www.gmc-uk.org/register. Surgeons who have been trained in Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery and have passed the necessary examinations are listed as having Specialist Registration in Plastic Surgery. All Surgeons performing Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery in the UK should have Specialist Registration.
There are a number of organisations regulating the quality of Plastic and Cosmetic surgery in the UK. These include The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons www.baaps.org.uk, the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons www.bapras.org.uk and the International society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons www.isaps.org.
The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery concentrates on Cosmetic Surgery specifically. Members of the association are required to:
- Have demonstrated that they have been specifically trained in Cosmetic Surgery
- Attend regular training meetings
- Submit yearly audit figures to the Association
The best way of choosing a Cosmetic Surgeon is often by personal recommendation. In fact most of the most experienced face lift surgeons receive most, if not all, of their work this way and never advertise or market their services. The difficulty with this approach is that most people who have had facial rejuvenation surgery are understandably reluctant to tell their circle of friends, family and colleagues. In fact research has shown that most people who have had surgery tell between 1-2 people.
If a personal recommendation is not available it is especially important that you gain as much information about the procedure as possible. Most Surgeons who specialise in face lift procedures will be able to provide:
- Detailed information leaflets about the procedure.
- Before and after pictures of patients who have undergone surgery.
- Data on how many facelifts and other procedures they perform a year.
- Analysis of the outcome of these procedures.
- Contact information of previous patients who have recently undergone facial surgery.
Facial rejuvenation surgery is a relatively specialised area of Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery and is not performed by all Surgeons. It is therefore important to check whether your surgeon specialises in this area.
Most reputable Surgeons would actively encourage you to talk or meet patients who have recently undergone similar procedures. This provides you with a first hand account of what’s involved and the likely recovery period. The decision to undergo surgery is a difficult one and many people find it reassuring to talk to someone who has recently been through a similar process.