Plastic Surgery Review Sites: How accurate are they?
Recently, plastic surgery review sites and their reputability have been a topic of discussion between doctors, patients, and in the internet world.
Many patients go to and read through many review sites in order to better educate themselves about plastic surgery, and to choose a plastic surgeon.
There is nothing wrong with this, as I am an advocate for patent education and empowering patients with the correct information.
Because I work in the operating rooms with some of the top plastic surgeons in the world, I am privy to a lot of information that I try to pass on to you, the reader, in order to better help you make an informed decision regarding choosing a physician, and surgery as a whole.
The internet is very useful for doing research, such as looking up procedures, watching videos on surgery, and viewing before and after pictures. It is also useful for looking up your potential surgeon’s Board Certification and license on the state medical board. This is public information, and free for anyone to use. There you can see if the doctor has a license in good standing, has had any reprimands or pending lawsuits.
Some of the problems that I am seeing with review sites are that several reputable, excellent, and well-respected doctors have many negative and crazy reviews written about them. This is interesting to me, the nurse, because I am in some of these offices all day, and see nothing but happy and satisfied patients. So why all the negative reviews?
It is normal to see occasional postings from patients about the wait time in the office, etc. However, an assault of negative comments and experiences CAN stem from several things and this is important to keep in mind. All it takes is ONE unhappy person to create a name/profile and start writing. These reviews are often passionate in nature, redundant, and attempt to assassinate the surgeon from a personal stance and attack. This person can be another doctor, his staff, a disgruntled ex- girlfriend or ex-wife, or the person who thought life as they knew it would change drastically after having their nose done. I have seen them all. Also, remember that happy patients usually don’t post on review sites as much unless they are asked to. They will tell their friends though.
There are now internet reputation management companies, who, for a fee, will police the review sites and clean up any less than perfect remarks. Funnily enough, if the surgeon decides that they don’t want to use their services, the amount of negative reviews starts to spike. I have witnessed this also.
So how does one know who and what to believe?
The best way to choose a surgeon is to go and see for yourself. Word of mouth is still the best option…celebrities don’t go on review sites; they always find their doctors through connections.
Schedule a consultation with 2-3 potential surgeons and spend time with them in order to form your own opinion. See how you feel about this person…do you feel informed, safe, positive? If not, keep looking. Ask people who are in the medical field, other doctors, nurses, techs. They work alongside the surgeons and can help steer you in the right direction.
The internet will only increase and expand in the future, and new sites and forms of social media will be invented. The bottom line is…don’t believe everything you read.