by Terrye Tebbetts
Recently on one of the implant forums, a lady was wondering if it was strange that her plastic surgeon did not require lab work before surgery. Her message made me realize what I have suspected for a long time – surgeons have “dumbed down” breast augmentation surgery so much – they have made it so cosmetic – that it is losing it’s clinical boundaries – -and that my friends, is a very slippery slope!!
I made the point on the forum that lab work before surgery is very important to the safety of this entire experience. The ladies started thinking and realizing that this is very true and then started to figure out how they could get lab work done on their own – - wait a minute – on their own?!?!? Ok – we have established that the surgeon they chose is NOT taking the best, safest care of them and yet they were still going to use that surgeon – making it ok by getting the lab work done on their own??? So you get the lab – who is going to evaluate it? Is the surgeon who did not order the lab going to pay any attention to what you get on your own??
So here’s my response and challenge to the ladies on the lab work issue -
ok – I know this won’t be 100% popular but if WE (discount the fact that I work in plastic surgery and just pretend I am a well informed patient like you guys) know that we should have lab work done and if it is NOT even on the PS’s radar……don’t go behind his or her back and do their job for them!! Find a truly wonderful PS that is THINKING and a PS that lives for surgery and all that it entails.
I think so many get off on the “it’s cosmetic” “we do Botox too” thing that they slight the clinical side – I don’t know if they do it because they don’t want to scare you off or if they do it because the have just gotten flippant – - it can’t be because of cost because lab work is CHEAP to clinics and surgeons….
If you are going to have surgery – then certain lab work applies – if you are over 30, AAAA says you should have a mammogram, if over 40 an EKG also and everyone has to have a set of blood work (Comp met panel, CBC w/diff and platelets, HIV and pregnancy) – Dr. Tebbetts, Dallas based plastic surgeon and 24 Hour Recovery expert, also requires an MRSA nasal swab – you can be a carrier for MRSA and not know it – it colonizes in the nose and if you are in hospitals or nursing homes all the time, you are certainly at more risk.
I harp all the time on here about how surgeons should prepare you for what you are about to go through and help you with understanding your recovery etc – - and yet – you guys still chose the “best doc” in your area, let him operate on you and then come on here and have a million questions that that surgeon and his staff should have answered for you. This board can supply some support – thank goodness – but it’s a shame because it should come from the people you PAID to take care of you.
Caring for your safety CLINICALLY is another story – - if we know we need safety and preop lab to help us be safe – if your ps isn’t calling for it – why do it on your own and still use that ps??? There are clinically motivated, thoughtful surgeons out there – you may have to do a bit of research. But this is so important – - please don’t settle. Why pay them to care for you if you are doing all the research, support and clinical carefulness on your own??
I think this is a huge topic and I am so glad it has been brought to life and to the attention of all here. Remember, no one needs a breast implant……we WANT them – it is elective – therefore every risk we face is multiplied 10 fold. Don’t settle for mediocre care – -especially in an elective procedure. There is more to this than simply choosing the size you want to be – - and I love that this topic brings all the considerations to light!
About the Author: Terrye Tebbetts is one of the most knowledgeable women in the world about breast implants, with 27 years of experience educating patients and 11 years as a patient herself. For more information about breast implants or breast augmentation Dallas surgeons, please visit www.thebestbreast.com.