I had a Cosmetic Surgery Consultation with Dr. Saunders: How Do I Schedule and What’s Next?

Once you have had a consultation with me, the next step is to make a decision about proceeding with your operation. You can, of coarse, call the office anytime and ask questions if you are still undecided or need help. The manager, Vicky, can help you with these questions. Her number is 302.584.8408.  But if you have made up your mind, you should call Vicky and tell her you are ready to proceed with your cosmetic surgery operation. (This writing was made to answer a patient’s question who lived in Wilmington, DE.)

When you speak to the manager, you should have your calendar ready- to choose a date. This will be your day of surgery! Most operations are scheduled on Wednesday or Thursday. I operate some fridays also. You can request certain days. Remember that surgery is scheduled in advance. If you are scheduling close to your desired operation day, you might not get a lot of choices of which day, because others have beaten you to the punch for their operation day. If you are scheduling more than 6-8 weeks in advance, you will get more choices about the day of surgery. My office tries hard to get you the day that you want for your procedure, but others are also scheduling.

All patients are given a cost analysis sheet on their first visit. This details your specific operation and specific costs. Please have this available when calling to schedule. It will list the specifics of the procedure you are having. We have the exact information as well. But I want the patient to understand the specifics as well, so everyone is on board with exactly what is to be done. If you are having a face lift, it will outline whether an eyelid lift or fat transfer is being done as well. If you are having liposuction, it will describe the locations. If you are having a tummy tuck, it will include any additional procedures. If you are having breast augmentation, it will include whether a lift or mastopexy is necessary. The cost analysis sheet is important and should not be lost.

When you speak to Vicky or Krista (her assistant), it will be important to be ready to pay your non-refundable deposit. This is important. This deposit is, as described, non-refundable. Once you tell my staff that you want surgery, we start to work for you. The cost of surgery is not just all for the day of surgery. Some of the cost is the preparation to get things ready for the big day. This includes office staff, supportive care, and preparation. This helps me provide you with the highest quality of cosmetic surgery.

The deposit $500 is due when you schedule. The remainder of the cost is due a month before your operation date. Some patients scheduling close to their surgery (within a month) will have to pay the deposit and the rest of the fees at the same time. Please help my staff by complying with the financial obligations. If for some reason, you have difficulties with the financial aspect of your surgery, please call for help as soon as you are aware of the problem.

Pre-operative tests will be required for many patients. These should be done ASAP. Please don’t delay on these. If you are healthy and less then 40 years old, it might just be a CBC or a blood count that is required. Patients older than 40 and having breast surgery will need an up to date mammogram. Patients older than 60, will require an EKG (electrocardiogram) and medical clearance before the operation. Most of the time this means seeing your primary care provider for any other tests needed. If for have any medical issues, like hypertension or diabetes, a stress test is often recommended. This is for safety purposes only.

Please remember, all pre-operative tests and mammograms take much longer to get done than expected. It is important to get these done quickly. If anything is wrong or not perfect, it allows time to get additional tests performed for example. Do not do the preoperative tests at the last minute. Please see your primary doctor ASAP, so all evaluations and tests can be done promptly. Delaying this responsibility could cancel surgery. If you need help with this step, please call. We can always be of assistance.

It is a good idea to get personal copies of all pre-operative tests for your personal records. Always get this from the laboratory or X-ray facility. Keep them for your records. This is just sage advice. It might seem unnecessary, but it isn’t. It is amazing to me how often lab results don’t make it to the doctor. If you have personal copy of all your tests, you can facilitate the entire process. Also, by having a complete record yourself, you are being a smart and wise patient.

All patients having surgery have a pre-operative visit. This is an important office visit. The purpose is to give you a chance to review anything that you feel should be discussed. I strive to have complete and thorough consultations. But the preoperative visit gives you a second chance to discuss your cosmetic surgery. If you are having breast surgery, the pre-operative visit will be used to review your “homework.” This is the time we pick your breast implant size for your augmentation. Make sure you have watched the video and bring in pictures of the breast size you want. This visit also includes review of your prescriptions for your procedure. I give all patients antibiotics, pain pills, anxiety pills, and nausea pills. These are for after surgery. All patients receive a dose of intravenous antibiotics before surgery. The anxiety pills can be used the night before surgery, for those who are more than a bit anxious.

All people having surgery will receive detailed pre-operative instructions. These will discuss and outline exactly what is necessary for the best and safest surgery. Read these more than  once. Always read and follow all instructions given to you. This can not be over emphasized. The instructions will include things like showering in the morning-right before surgery. Wearing clean and loose clothing is important. Do not eat or drink anything after midnight. People taking blood pressure pills MUST take their AM medicine dose. This can be taken with a sip of water.

Once you have completed your pre-operative tests and visit, it is time to get extra excited for your upcoming cosmetic surgery. If you are hoping to have facial rejuvenation, it is time to get excited about your face lift or eyelid tuck. If you are doing breast implants, liposuction, or a mommy makeover, I want you to be excited and enjoy your procedure. For the patient from Wilmington, DE. I hope this was valuable. To all patients, the office staff and I want you to have a safe and fabulous experience during your cosmetic experience.