Do Plastic Surgeons and Core Doctors Deliver Higher on Patient Satisfaction?

Do Plastic Surgeons and Core Doctors Deliver Higher on Patient Satisfaction?

150 150 Tom Seery

do plastic surgeons do a better job?

ASAPS just released stats for 2012 and our team at RealSelf was excited to see the inclusion of the RealSelf Worth It Ratings, which speak broadly to patient satisfaction with cosmetic procedures, products and treatments.

Based on our observations and community feedback we’ve found 3 interesting patterns:

  • Overall, aesthetic consumers are more satisfied than not with the outcomes from their cosmetic procedure.
  • Satisfaction is highest for procedures that are more invasive (such as Tummy Tuck).
  • The Worth It Rating for breast augmentation is significantly higher when the provider is a board certified plastic surgeon. The overall rating for breast augmentation is currently 88%. When just looking at breast augmentation ratings for board certified plastic surgeons, the ratings climbs to 94%.

On this third point it appears plastic surgeons are delivering predictable, happy outcomes for breast surgery patients. This may explain why breast implant device company Sientra has a policy of only selling to board certified plastic surgeons. On their website it states:

At Sientra, we understand dedication. That’s why we cater exclusively to board-certified plastic surgeons. As you deliver on the high expectations of your patients each day, we’ll be doing the same for you with innovative products and unsurpassed service.

For other procedures, where the aesthetic “core four” board specialties are compared against the overall ratings, there are similar out-performances.

RealSelf Worth It Rating Rating when performed by “Core Four” Doctor
Liposuction 75% 87%
Tummy Tuck 95% 98%
Eyelid Surgery 77% 88%
Botox/Dysport 64% 89%
Juvederm/Restylane 66% 87%


This data serves as validation of our decision to limit participation on RealSelf to board certified medical specialists; doctor training and specialty does matter to patients and their outcomes.


Tom Seery

Tom Seery is the founder and CEO of RealSelf, the most popular online resource that helps consumers research cosmetic treatments and find the right medical aesthetic provider. Each month RealSelf attracts 10 million unique visitors who view 50 million photos. Another 500,000 people contact doctors and clinics seeking more information or appointments. Integral to RealSelf is a model that showcases the expertise of aesthetic providers. Experts have posted two million answers to questions and routinely upload educational videos, and patient before & after photos. Prior to RealSelf, Tom was a member of the founding team at Expedia, where he conceived a $1.2b private-label travel business, launched the cruise travel line of business, and introduced search marketing long before Google was a household name. Tom sits on the board of ReSurge International, a nonprofit that builds plastic reconstructive surgical capacity in developing countries. He also regularly lectures on innovation and serves on the board of the entrepreneurship programs at the University of Washington. Tom holds an MS from Drexel University, MBA from University of Washington, and BA from Connecticut College. He resides in Seattle with his wife and two highly energetic boys. He is @seery on Twitter or @realself_tom on Instagram, should you wish to connect.

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