Vetting Physicians Practicing Cosmetic Medicine And Plastic Surgery
In 2011 consumers spent approximately $10 billion dollars on cosmetic and plastic surgery procedures, and economic indicators imply demand for procedures like breast augmentation and body contouring (i.e., liposuction) will continue to increase by at least 3%-5% annually for the foreseeable future. This volume leads to increased competition for providing these medical services, which is a major benefit of a market economy. However, there are some potholes for patients to consider and hopefully avoid. Many physicians who are not board certified by ASPS are trying to move away from the bureaucratic hassles of practicing medicine with insurance companies in order to focus their business on fee-for-service practices such as plastic surgery. Because plastic surgery procedures are generally elective, they are not covered by insurance, and that means the patient pays out-of-pocket. One exception would be reconstructive breast surgery following a mastectomy. For instance, physicians like dermatologists and OBGYNâ€™s are marketing themselves as cosmetic surgeons because the rules permit them to do so. It is not uncommon for dermatologists to offer surgical procedures traditionally left to board certified plastic surgeons. Physicians who have specialized in plastic surgery all their career, who have received board certification in that area, who are involved with academia and teaching medical school students are those best suited to help patients looking for surgical interventions like breast augmentation and liposuction. We do not mean to disparage these physicians, but specialties are within the medical community for a good reason. Dr. Michael Eisemann has dedicated his 30+ year career to plastic and reconstructive surgery as well as academic medicine; therefore, he has performed thousands of procedures and remains on the cutting edge.