Social Media Determining Who Qualified To Perform Plastic Surgery

According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, sites like Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat have become the go-to destinations for information for many patients, especially the younger ones, and plastic surgeons are intensifying their efforts to compete with one another, with an increasingly dominating online presence of practitioners who aren’t specially trained in plastic surgery. This should cause most people concern, just because a surgeon has many followers and promotions does not make them the most qualified!
In one report, an estimated 40% of patients who say social media strongly influenced their choice of doctor for aesthetic plastic surgery, according to a study published in the April 2015 Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.

While some plastic surgeons have embraced social media and say it has helped them reach patients. Board-certified Plastic Surgeons need to be more proactive and prominent on all social-media platforms. Researchers at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine found in a study published last month that less than 18% of the most popular surgery-related posts on Instagram were posted by plastic surgeons licensed by the American Board of Plastic Surgery!

In a time were perception is becoming reality, it is important to make sure before you have ANY surgical procedure to do your homework. Navigating cosmetic surgery providers’ credentials and experience can be daunting for even the savviest consumer. A dozen boards with similar names can indicate anything from six years of specialized training to a weekend course on injectables. Only one, the American Board of Plastic Surgery, is recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties, a nonprofit that oversees 24 medical specialty boards.

All this confusing marketing is putting people at risk,” says Clark Schierle, a board-certified plastic surgeon at Northwestern Medicine in Chicago and senior author of the recent study in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal. Dr. Schierle adds that patients might not realize they are getting a doctor without a plastic surgeon’s training and experience. This could have serious repercussions and lead to major complications.

If you are interested in a cosmetic procedure, contact our office to schedule a consultation. Dr. Hricko is a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and will answer all of your questions and ensure your surgical experience exceeds your expectations.

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