What Every Plastic Surgery Patient Should Know?
By Anne Dyer
The increase in the number of plastic surgery patients over the past decade has created a niche industry in Ajijic, and just as in the US and Canada, quality care standards vary by medical facility and doctor.
Here’s what you need to know to make an informed decision before undergoing your cosmetic surgery procedure.
The Importance of Before, During and After-Care
A thorough health screening, labwork, and honest discussion with your doctor are critical. But beyond that, there are some very important before-and-after care questions to ask your doctor, to ensure you have a successful plastic surgery experience.
• Price – what are you getting for what you pay?
Some very low plastic surgery prices are attractive, but buyer beware. The price of a surgeon’s time, experience, skill, equipment, anesthesiologist, nurses, and medication have value. Stay away from the “too good to be true” bottom prices. Check references and understand what you’re getting for the price.
In many cases, with “cheaper” surgery you’ll find there is virtually no before-and-aftercare provided, creating a dangerous situation for patients who may experience bleeding, high blood pressure, or pain after a procedure. As with shopping for any major expense, the best value is found in the middle price range.
• Is your doctor board-certified, in good standing, on staff at any major hospitals?
A good doctor will be board-certified, have standing in a hospital facility, and many patients willing to refer him. And he will be staffed and equipped to make sure there are no gaps in patient care before, during and after surgery.
• Will you have English-speaking staff with you to translate your questions and concerns, or to communicate any problems, before and after surgery?
Communication is critical in any surgical environment, and in many cases, patients don’t find out if English-speaking staff are present until it’s too late. Your doctor, anesthesiologist, nurse, attendant, and Patient-Care Manager should all work together to ensure your success.
• Who will care for you when you wake up, how long will you stay in the hospital, and how far is it to the nearest emergency facility?
It’s important that you spend the first 24 hours in a hospital to handle any problems that may arise such as bleeding, nausea, dizziness, high blood pressure, and pain. Post-surgery is the most vulnerable time for patients – mentally, physically and emotionally. A Patient-Care Manager will ensure that you have English-speaking transportation to and from the facility, and that you will have a full-time companion to monitor your condition during the critical time before, during and after your surgery.
• Will a nurse be monitoring your blood pressure and vitals after the procedure?
Who will remove stitches, help you into and out of clothes, and see that you are able to bathe, eat and drink appropriately after surgery?
Having a professional available to change and remove bandages, assist you in washing your hair and taking a shower, and providing the proper medication and food during the hours after surgery is a must. You may need more than a doctor to get you through the entire process of having surgery – it can be very helpful to have an experienced English-speaking Patient Care team working on your behalf. Knowing that someone “has your back” and is looking out for your well-being as a patient and a human being is priceless.
Anne Dyer is the founder and Director of Patient Services for Casita Montana Medical Sanctuary & Beauty Spa, Ajijic’s own plastic surgery before-and-after care facility. To discover more about Casita Montana, go to www.casitamontana.com to take a video tour of the facilities and meet the staff, doctors and patients
For more information about Lake Chapala visit: www.chapala.com