My father is a plastic surgeon

My father is a plastic surgeon
My father is a plastic surgeon

By Leigh Adams, Daughter of William P. Adams, MD of Boston, MA

As the daughter of a plastic surgeon, the first question I am commonly asked is whether or not I have had anything done. Although I have not had any cosmetic surgery to date, I believe one day I probably will. I wish to age gracefully and I have witnessed time and time again the positive effect surgery has had on my father's patients.

I feel as though the word "plastic" connotes something fake or gaudy. And while plastic surgery can sometimes be just that, it can also be quite elegant and natural. What you see in supermarket tabloids and photoshopped beauty magazines is not an accurate portrayal of a field that deserves much more artistic and intellectual credit.

A talented plastic surgeon is one who can make subtle changes that help improve the appearance of everyday people like you and me. The best results are when others cannot tell you've even had work done. People simply comment that you look great and want to know your secret.

Make no mistake; it takes a skilled surgeon to achieve these kinds of results. The decision to have plastic surgery is a serious matter and patients should choose their surgeon wisely. It is imperative to research a surgeon’s credentials, make sure they are board certified in plastic surgery, examine their before and after portfolio to make sure it is in keeping with the look you are hoping to achieve. Most importantly, choose someone you trust.

Growing up I was lucky enough to be cared for by my father's colleagues whenever I saw a dentist, pediatrician, or other medical professional. I did not understand what great medical care I had growing up until I moved across the country to San Diego and had to find new medical professionals to care for me. I encountered doctors that behaved more like used car salesmen intent on making a profit. I stumbled upon dentists that offered breast augmentations and aestheticians with little to no training offering Botox parties. I realized that not every doctor I met always had my best interests at hand and many were offering services outside of their area of expertise.

I am writing this because I feel strongly about cosmetic surgery and the importance of choosing a surgeon wisely. A Board Certified Plastic Surgeon has spent an additional two years after a 5 year general residency training in the field of plastic surgery. He/she must pass rigorous examinations administered by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) to attain board certification. One easy way to find a credential surgeon is to go to the Smart Beauty Guide, all of the surgeons listed there are ASAPS members (meaning they are ABPS certified). Choosing a cosmetic surgeon purely based on price is not worth the small sum of money you might save upfront.

Cosmetic surgery is elective. We do not all need to have nips, tucks, and lifts to improve their appearance; and yet we often choose to have a cosmetic procedure because it makes us feel better about ourselves. A talented plastic surgeon is an impeccable tailor of the human form, employing creativity and craftsmanship. But most importantly, he should be someone you can trust.