Whom to Meet ??? What to do next???

I think these are the most common questions that pop up in any one’s mind when he or she is contemplating a bodily change. 

Day in and day out we are bombarded with ads promising the earth, the sky and everything in between. Marketing is meant to sell a product and hence needs to highlight only the positives and hide the negatives of any product. So on we go checking “ it” out.

Guaranteed fairness , guaranteed inch loss, guaranteed weight loss, guaranteed hair growth, guaranteed this guaranteed that!!! Sounds familiar??? I’m sure it does.

I have nothing against these ads but as the saying goes… “ If its too good to be true.. most probably it isn’t true !!!” Similarly promising guaranteed, results on a body where no two bodies are similar is “too good to be true”.

All this adds to the confusion already prevailing in one;s mind. So one might say, that then why do people go for it? I think it all is because of :

  1. The basic fear people have regarding going under the knife, hospitals, doctors and all that.
  2. That treatment has “ Guaranteed results”
  3. We as doctors tell the limitations of the procedure and the possible complications which puts people off.
  4. As doctors we cannot take short cuts, the basic work up and the whole procedure has to be done , which is another deterrent.

So just to put things into perspective, I thought of putting all the points one has to think about before going for a modification of one’s body. Sort of like a “ DUMMIES guide to …….” Ill put it in three headings:

  1. From a patients point what one should know
  2. What and how to know about the procedure
  3. What to look for in the treatment provider

What a patient should know: Read about it in my blog link already posted here

Know about your Procedure:

  1. Once you know what you want to get done, read about the procedure.
  2. You can find information about the procedure on the net by doing a search on any of the popular search engines. Google, Yahoo, Alta Vista, etc being a few of them
  3. Read about all the options available for what you want to get done
  4. Search for possible complications with regards to the procedure.

Educating your self about the options and the procedure will give you new insights into the procedure and will help you mentally prepare for them.

What to know about your treatment provider:

  1. Read about your procedure and know who is qualified to such a procedure. You will find lots of people claiming to do certain procedures in certain center’s.
  2. Surgical procedures are done by plastic surgeons, only they are trained to do them and licensed by the Medical Council of India to perform them.
  3. The Association of Plastic Surgeons of India ( APSI) is the the authority granting certification to all the plastic surgeons in India.( www.apsi.in)
  4. Don’t feel shy of asking your doctor about his certification and training. I have many of my patients asking me these questions. Patients coming from abroad make it a point to find out these details.
  5. Talk to your surgeon in detail. Place in front of him all you fears and apprehensions. Most of your doubts will be cleared but don’t get offended if they do no respond to some questions by giving you the worst possible scenario. It is done so you realize that all surgeries are serious matters .
  6. Always beware a doctor who does not tell you the complications or tell you that there are no complications at all. Either, he hasn’t done enough surgeries to see complications or he is lying about them.
  7. Don’t rush into a procedure. Always take your time to think about it after discussion with your doctor. I NEVER operate on a patient after one consultation. I always call them at least a second or third time before I operate on them. This is because I want them to be sure of what they are undergoing.

So keeping all these in mind, just to recapitulate:

  1. Be clear about what you want.
  2. Vague requests get vague results, if at all anyone operates on them.
  3. Educate yourself about the procedure, who should do them, the various options and the possible complications.
  4. As far as the body is concerned “ Guarantees don’t work !!!” Every thing has its limitations and one has to work within those limitations to achieve the best results.
  5. Know about the credentials of your doctor.
  6. Surgical procedures have to be done in properly equipped Operating theaters and not in some “ clinic”, with care regarding sterility and safety equipment.
  7. Please remember if a doctor is saying “NO “ to a procedure there must be a reason behind it. Ask him the reasons and trust his decisions. All doctors want to provide you with a good result and most will refuse a patient if they know what he or she expects is unrealistic.
  8. Always follow orders with regards to quitting smoking , cleaning the wound, wearing garments, taking medicines and taking rest.
  9. Remember you can rush yourself and the surgeon but you cannot rush your body to heal. It will take its own time.
  10. Trust your doctor ,be sure to keep in touch with him and inform him of any problems you might be facing, instead of going to another doctor who doesn’t know what exactly was done.

The aim of this blog is to help you make educated decision about the procedure , to educate you as to where to go to and what to do as a next step, once a decision to undergo a procedure has been taken. A well educated , motivated patient is a happy patient as he is fully aware of the consequences and the expected outcome.

Hence don’t be afraid, go ahead, take the decision, but just make an educated decision which will be of a great help to you and to your doctor.

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