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In order to be board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, one must graduate from an accredited medical school, do internship and residency training in either general surgery or otolaryngology, complete an approved residency in plastic and reconstructive surgery, practice a minimum of two years after graduation, and pass extensive written and oral exams which include a review of all cases done by that surgeon in the past year! This is an incredibly long and tedious process, usually taking a minimum of 7 1/2 years after graduation from medical school!
While many people feel that plastic surgeons spend all of their time doing Noses and Liposuction, that is far from the case. The reason for such extensive training is that the plastic surgeon is one of the few medical specialists who is truly called upon to help with every part of the body. From brain surgery, to cleft lip in infants, ear, throat, breast, and all other areas, there is really no body part that plastic surgeons aren’t called upon to fix when other surgeons run up against difficult situations.
Many Plastic Surgeons focus their practices on Cosmetic Surgery and others on Reconstructive Surgery. For this reason, it is important to ask about the type of cases that a particular surgeon focuses on.
The American Board of Medical Specialties is one of the established organizations that oversees the process of board certification of physicians.
Another good place to explore is the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons. To be a Member, a surgeon must have completed training in an accredited program and be Board Certified. This society comprises 97 percent of all plastic surgeons certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery!
The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons consists of Board Certified Plastic Surgeons who specialize in cosmetic surgery. This is also a good place to look for the credentials of your doctor.
One of the most prestigious organizations in medicine, is The American College Of Surgeons. In order to be a Fellow of The American College of Surgeons (FACS), a surgeon must be board certified in his or her specialty, have practiced a minimum of one year after board certification, and passed a review of clinical work, academic work and ethics!
If the surgeon displays the initials F. A. C. S. after his or her name,
that denotes that they have been designated a
Fellow of The American College of Surgeons,
and completed the above process.