What do you ask your derm before you go under the laser or needle? Hey, it's your face -- and even so-called "minor" collagen injections carry risks, says Dr. Jeannette Graf, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at New York University School of Medicine.
Mary Rose Almasi
Check credentials Q: Are you board certified? Which board? There are 24 approved certifying boards recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), which includes the American Board of Dermatology and the American Board of Plastic Surgery. You want to be sure that the doctor performing your procedure is certified to do the type of procedure you are getting. (A gynecologist can be legitimately board certified in gynecology -- but that doesn't mean you should let him or her perform cosmetic surgery on you.) Call 1-866-ASK-ABMS or go to abms.org to verify a doctor's certification status. Next: Am I patient No. 1? Get some data Q: How many of these procedures have you performed? The answer will vary. Of course, you don't want to be the second person your doctor has worked on, but weigh his or her response along with other factors, like reputation or how long the procedure has been available in the United States. Consider it a plus if the doctor teaches the procedure at a university or trains other specialists. It's a clue that he or she has a deep understanding of the procedure and has performed it frequently. Next: What's my commitment here? Take a realistic look at the commitment Q: How many treatments will this take? Ask for a grand total -- in dollars and number of sessions -- up front, so you're not surprised later when you're already mid-commitment. Next: How long will I be out of commission? Assess down time Q: What are the side effects? Ask about pain during and after the procedure, and how long the average recovery time is. Get details about how your skin will look after the procedure, and for how long. Look at pictures. Be sure to ask specifically if you can go to work the same day. Many light devices can be used more or less aggressively on skin, depending on what you want to achieve in results and recovery. It's safe to assume you'll be pink after most procedures, but your face could be bright red. Are You Ready for Botox? Makeup Tricks That Erase 10 Years The Right Skin Care for Your Age Subject Subject Subject Message Message Message http://www.google.com /content/package/c_skin_treat_derm/