Care After Your Cosmetic Surgery

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What kind of after care should I expect from my cosmetic surgeon?

Robert Kotler, MD
I think the patient has a right to expect attentive post operative care, and post operative care with a lot of forethought, meaning that the doctor's prepared me for what to expect, so I'm not worried, and second has given me all the things I need to provide my own home care. Everything from little creams for the skin, to dressing supplies, to pain pills, to sleeping pills, to anti-bruising pills, not just say we'll see you in a week, good-bye. In other words, you've got to counsel the patient and then I believe to best serve that patient, give them what they need.

Robert Kotler, MD (cont.)
Don't say here's a prescription if you have some pain, and then the patient's family has to stand in line at a drugstore at 3 in the morning because all of a sudden, they are uncomfortable. No, the better practices give the patient a kit, a bag, that has in it everything that they would be expected to need. And if the patient said, you know unfortunately, I've got a history of having nausea after I've had previous procedures. We don't want them to have nausea, we don't want them to have vomiting, because that can interfere with their comfort and also even has a bearing on the outcome. So you prescribe an anti-nausea medication and say guess what, we're going to give this to you even before you go to sleep for the surgery. In other words, always thinking ahead, what to expect and convenience and service to the patient. Why should the family have to worry about the pain medicine?

Robert Kotler, MD (cont.)
No, this is all laid out ahead of time, and when the consultation takes place, issues of pain and pain control should come up so we're prepared. We ask the patient, have you ever had surgery? Yes. Did you have any problems with surgery? Did you have pain, did you have nausea, did you have vomiting? That's the time for these things to come out and when the patient says let me tell you something, I took Tylenol with Codeine and I felt terrible, I was nauseated, it didn't agree with my stomach, well we're not going to use Tylenol with Codeine. We're going to prepare, and we'll have a substitute in the bag ready for them so they don't have to worry about it.

Robert Kotler, MD (cont.)
So, I think the patient is entitled to as much as attention to detail after the surgery as they are during the surgery where every stitch should be put in with attention to detail. This is all about detail. If a doctor is not detail oriented and compulsive, probably won't have as gratifying a career.