Reviewed by Varnada Karriem-Norwood on May 03, 2012
Robert Kotler, MD, FACS Cosmetic and Plastic Surgeon of the Face and Neck Clinical instructor, Division of Head & Neck Surgery, UCLA Medical School.
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Robert Kotler, MD: I think you get what you pay for in life, and you get what you pay for in cosmetic surgeon's office— a consultation. I don't think a free consultation is a good idea. The patient should want to pay for a service. It's very important service, because the answer may be that it's not a good idea to have cosmetic surgery for x, y, and z reasons. and you're gonna get an honest opinion because you're paying for the doctor's time. And frankly, for many practices, that two-hundred dollars or a hundred and fifty or whatever the number is, they apply it to the procedure anyway if you're comfortable or the doctor's comfortable doing it. So at least in that practice, it really hasn't cost you any more to consult.
Robert Kotler, MD: If you're going to do consulting with 3 or 4 practices, yes, you could say wow, one-hundred fifty or two-hundred dollars. I'm going to be investing a fair amount of money, but you know, you're also talking about a procedure that maybe is thousands of dollars. They are thousands most of the time, certainly the bigger procedures like face lifting, breast reduction, tummy tucks. It's still a good investment because you're going to learn. In my experience, the practices that charge you for the consultation give you a lot more education. The practices that don't charge you give you a lot more selling. But I don't think you should be sold on this. I don't think it's something that you need to be drawn into. I think you have to approach it as a very, very important consumer decision. It is your face, it is your body, even your health is on the line, to a tiny, tiny degree. So, I think it is better to pay for the consultation.