Cosmetic Surgeons Should Work Within Their Scope of Practice
I am delighted to hear that the Royal College of Surgeons is highlighting the need to ensure that only fully accredited surgeons should perform cosmetic surgery. Unfortunately, cosmetic surgery is an area that people embark upon without considering the qualifications and experience of their surgeon. Cosmetic surgery is the only area of surgery where this applies.
There is a link to my radio appearance on my website here
No one would consider having a hip replacement with anyone other than an orthopaedic surgeon, or a heart bypass with anyone other than a cardiothoracic surgeon. However, plastic surgery is performed by general surgeons, GPs, dentists, dermatologists and surgeons who are not fully trained in any speciality at all!
Surgical training involves many years of working as a junior doctor before you are allowed to sit an exit exam which are designed to test whether you are capable of working without supervision. Only when you have passed these exams are you eligible to apply for a Consultant Post and start training other surgeons. You can tell if a plastic surgeon has passed this exam by whether they have FRCS(Plast) after their name. There are many surgeons who have not passed this exam and would not be eligible to perform surgery without supervision in the NHS, but who are operating without supervision in the private sector. There is no regulation to prevent this.
Even amongst plastic surgeons, there are subspecialities and we all have certain areas that we regularly treat “ some specialise in the head and neck, others may do burns or cleft lip and others specialise in the breast. However, many plastic surgeons tend to operate on all areas of the body in the private sector.
This is something that I feel particularly strongly about and I am writing a book about it entitled:
I also have an Ebook that you can download with the 5 Questions that you should ask your surgeon to ensure that he or she is a fully trained plastic surgeon. You can download it here
For the last 7 years or so, I have specialised in breast surgery and body contouring. I do not do facelifts, nose jobs, botox or fillers. I do not work outside my scope of training and this gives me a depth of experience that could not be achieved if were to offer a wide range of treatments. I believe that facial cosmetic procedures should be left to people who have an interest and expertise in that area “ it is not something to dabble in.
This is exactly what the Royal College Surgeons are calling for “ that surgeons should only operate within the field they have been trained in. Listen to it here
Staiano Plastic Surgery is my clinic and I own and run it. My special interest is the breast and body, but I have other specialists that work with me with their own scope of practice including facial plastic surgeons, skin specialists and non-surgical experts. Until we have regulation to prevent untrained doctors from performing surgery, it is up to us to continue to educate the public about what to look out for so that you can know the qualifications and experience of your surgeon.