Our faces contain the most personal of all of our traits, and in many ways define us to the outside world. The face is also one of the most medically complex anatomical areas of the body, with many nerves, blood vessels, and other critical anatomic structures. When considering cosmetic or reconstructive plastic surgery on the face, it is very important to find a surgeon who specializes in performing procedures on the face. This guide was formulated to help patients who are considering upper eyelid blepharoplasty (eye lift), lower eyelid blepharoplasty, and brow lift surgery, and are searching for the right surgeon. Much of the advice within the article also applies to other types of facial cosmetic and reconstructive surgery.
Can’t Most Cosmetic Surgeons Perform these Procedures?
While many surgeons may advertise providing blepharoplasty and brow lift surgeries, not every surgeon performs them regularly. This is important because, across medicine, it has been well demonstrated that surgeons who perform a given procedure frequently are more likely to have outstanding results and less likely to encounter complications. Further, while no surgery is without risk, the likelihood of any individual complication lessens substantially with specialists who perform the procedure regularly. Therefore, it would be prudent to understand how experienced your surgeon is in your particular procedures of interest.
What Credentials Matter when Looking for a Blepharoplasty Surgeon Near You?
The short answer is that it is the entire sum of training that matters, including (but not limited to) the following:
- Medical School
The reputation of a medical school can help give background on the type of student the surgeon was prior to entering residency. Furthermore, students who graduate from top medical schools are often more likely to be accepted into a better and more competitive residency training program. The US News & World Report ranks medical schools each year, and while the individual rankings may differ somewhat with any given year, medical schools that are frequently listed at the top include Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, Columbia University, Yale University, University of Pennsylvania, University of Michigan, Stanford University, and others.
- Residency Training
The type and location of a residency training program are important when considering the credentials of an eyelid plastic surgeon. Generally, most surgeons performing blepharoplasty and brow lifts will have completed an ophthalmology residency, general plastic surgery residency, or otolaryngology – head and neck surgery residency. Similar to the medical school, institutions with better reputations often expose young surgeons to a more complex patients to help form their experience. Residency training program rankings are now also compiled by Doximity for ophthalmology, plastic surgery, and otolaryngology – head and neck surgery. Across the residency types, Johns Hopkins University and University of Michigan and usually within the top five when ranked by reputation.
- Type of Fellowship Training
Fellowship is a very important aspect of modern surgeon training. Fellowships are training beyond residency that allow surgeons to focus on one particular aspect of what are otherwise very broad fields. Many cosmetic surgeon may simply list that they underwent fellowship training in a given city where people assume many plastic surgeries are performed (e.g. Beverly Hills, New York, etc). However, this does not ensure appropriate training. In fact, certain fellowships in these locations are only “observerships”, where a fellow simply watches another surgeon without him/her performing any aspects of the procedures. Medical societies have attempted to combat this by certifying individual fellowships. It is therefore important that you verify your surgeon underwent proper fellowship training. You can search for whether your surgeon completed and/or is a member of the American Society for Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ASOPRS), a plastic surgery craniofacial fellowship, and an American Association for Facial Plastic Surgery Fellowship.
- Board Certification
Surgeons who practice within an individual specialty become board certified to ensure that they have the education and experience necessary to practice within a field. For blepharoplasty and related procedures such as brow lift, you should ensure that your surgeon is board certified by one of the following certifying authorities: American Academy of Ophthalmology, the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, and/or the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
- State Licensure
You surgeon should be licensed to practice medicine in the state where you will be having the medical services provided. Within the State of Michigan, you can ensure that a surgeon has up-to-date licensure by searching within the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs. Public enforcement actions against a physician may also be listed on this website.
Why do patients choose us?
- Dr. Shannon S. Joseph is a Johns Hopkins University and University of Michigan trained, board-certified oculofacial plastic surgeon.
- She specializes exclusively in plastic surgery of the eyes and face.
- Blepharoplasty is the most common procedure Dr. Joseph performs, and she has successfully performed thousands of these surgeries.
- Dr. Joseph firmly believes in treating each patient like her family and is committed to providing patients with the highest quality care as well as stellar experience.
- At your one-on-one consultation, Dr. Joseph will take her time to carefully listen to your expectations and goals, perform a comprehensive evaluation, and works together with you to design a plan that is fully tailored to your anatomy and aesthetic goals.
- Learn more about why patients choose us.
Dr. Joseph serves patients located in Troy, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, West Bloomfield, Rochester, Rochester Hills, and surrounding areas of Southeastern Michigan. If you are interested in a personal consultation with Dr. Joseph, contact us to schedule an appointment. We look forward to helping you look and feel your best.