Cosmetic surgery is more in demand than ever before. Advances in cosmetic procedures offer many benefits and options to patients both surgical and non-surgical, to help people look younger and healthier. For many people plastic surgery is often an immense, life-changing decision. Before proceeding, ensure your surgery is being carried out by a qualified surgeon in the proper environment and that you have all the information you need to make a properly informed decision.

Choosing Your SurgeonIn Canada, cosmetic surgery can be performed by anyone who is licensed to practice medicine. This unfortunate situation has resulted in many people having procedures done by doctors who have not received appropriate training in plastic surgery.

It is up to the patient to ensure the surgeon you choose has the proper qualifications and training. The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario is the body that regulates the practice of medicine in Ontario to protect and serve the public interest. They have produced this checklist for anyone planning to have cosmetic surgery.

  1. Find out if your prospective surgeon is a member of the Canadian Society of Plastic Surgeons. To be a member of this society guarantees that your surgeon has the proper training required to perform Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.
  2. Check with your provincial college of physicians and surgeons to see whether the surgeon is licensed and whether disciplinary action has been taken against him/her.
  3. Verify credentials and training. Many cosmetic surgeons advertise they are “board-certified.” But requirements vary greatly depending on which professional board is cited. In Canada, only the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons certifies physicians and surgeons in medical specialties (
  4. Ask the surgeon how often he or she performs the procedure you want and what the complication rates are.
  5. Ask surgeons whether they have hospital admitting privileges in case of complications after surgery. Call the hospital to verify the information. If the doctor has an in-office operating suite, ask if it is certified.
  6. Ask family physicians or other doctors knowledgeable about the local medical community what their opinion of your prospective surgeon is.

If you are going to have plastic surgery, it is imperative that you do your homework and make sure you are using a properly accredited surgeon.