Patients often ask if they can bring a companion, such as their significant other, spouse, relative, friend, or other trusted confidant, with them to their plastic surgery consultation. Most plastic surgeons, including Dr. Harrell at Fountain of Youth Plastic Surgery in Tampa Bay, FL, have no problem with a patient bringing a trusted companion to his or her plastic surgery consultation. It’s ultimately up to you who, if anyone, you will bring with you to your consultation. However, if you are a minor (under the age of 18), then you are required to bring a parent or legal guardian with you to your consultation.
One of the universal, underlying tenants of elective plastic surgery is that it should be done for you and you only and not to fit into an ideal image or try to meet someone else’s expectations for your appearance. Keeping this in mind, here are some of the pros and cons of bringing a companion with you to your plastic surgery consultation:
- An extra set of ears and eyes can be helpful. A plastic surgery consultation can be overwhelming and nerve-wracking; as such, even though we encourage patients to take notes and bring in a pre-written list of questions, you may forget important details and questions. A companion can help you remember additional things the doctor said during your consultation and prompt you to bring up questions you forgot to ask.
- If your companion will also be your post-op caregiver, the consultation is an excellent time for your caregiver to learn about the procedure, the recovery process, and what his or her caregiving responsibilities will entail.
- A trusted companion can help you relax making the consultation a productive and comfortable experience as opposed to a potentially overwhelming and stressful one.
- If your companion has any hesitation about your plastic surgery, meeting the surgeon face-to-face can help address their worries and reluctancies so that they may be fully supportive of your decision. However, keep in mind that it is not the plastic surgeon’s job to convince your companion that plastic surgery is the right decision for you.
- The presence of a companion at your consultation may cause you to censor your communications with your surgeon about your medical history and personal issues. If there is something you are not comfortable disclosing in front of your companion, then don’t bring this person to your consultation.
- Sometimes even the most well-meaning and trusted companions can be overbearing and take over the consultation, overshadowing the patient and imposing their wishes and opinions on the patient. Do not choose a companion who is known to be combative, is difficult to deal with, or interrupts people and talks over them. Do not choose a companion who could become jealous that you are getting surgery and they are not. Your selected companion should understand his or her role in accompanying you to your consultation and be willing and able to fulfill that role.
- Some people do not want others to know that they are having plastic surgery. If you bring a companion to your consultation, he or she may tell others about your plastic surgery, even if you expressly said not to.
- The “too many cooks in the kitchen” problem. Just bring one person with you to your consultation. Any more, and you risk too many competing opinions, crosstalk, distractions, and an overcrowded exam room.
Fountain of Youth’s Dr. C. Randall Harrell, M.D. is a board certified plastic surgeon in Tampa Bay, FL and offers both cosmetic medicine and cosmetic surgery procedures for the face, breast body and skin. He specializes in breast augmentation, rhinoplasty, facelifts, tummy tucks, mommy makeovers, skin rejuvenation, and much more.
Are you ready to schedule your consultation at Fountain of Youth Plastic Surgery in Tampa Bay, FL? If so, call us toll-free at (800) 781-0818 or contact us via our website here. Whether you come to your appointment alone or with a companion, we will offer you honest, thorough advice to help you make decisions about your appearance and whether plastic surgery is right for you.