Doctor Shopping: Why Cheap is a Disastrous Parachute with Your Face –Facelift, Laser, Botox, Injectable Fillers

Doctor Shopping: Why Cheap is a Disastrous Parachute with Your Face –Facelift, Laser, Botox, Injectable Fillers 


How do you get the best results at the best price?

This is something everyone wonder about when they make any purchase but especially important items like plastic surgery.  There are several typical pitfalls.  Sometimes services that have a low price-tag do not have a lot of value or help achieve beauty goals.  Here are some examples.  A single cheap treatment with no plan may work if the problem is very specific.  Otherwise having a well established plan of treatments lets you do fewer treatments with a better maintained appearance.  This means that cheap with no plan is really not as cheap as it seems.

Sometimes, the price is lower but the provider has no finesse or very little experience.  Physicians who are board certified in the core four specialties that include aesthetic care as part of the residency training and specialty examination means you are getting a provider physician with years or decades of experience.  Overall, this gives you good odds, in my opinion,  at getting what you’re looking for.

Whiplash Encounters

Are you in and out of the office in 5 minutes with a quick, slapdash treatment?  The price is low so care has to happen quickly.  No assessment or evaluation is made,  and no education and partnering is provided.  A quick fix is fine if you are sure you know exactly what you want  but it is hard to put much finesse or fine detail into what you are getting.  When you get fast food –it is exactly that –fast and thrown together in a repetitive fashion, one size fits all.  Dining in a fine restaurant, food preparation takes more time but the product if very different.  It’s a meal in either case but not really the same quality, value or experience.  This is a big deal when your face, which people see all day every day, is at stake.

Another problem area in my view is experiences that are focused on other priorities than your appearance.  Some facilities offer a great social media experience or mocktails to consume with your friends and it’s lots of fun to go and have that experienc.  But how you are going to look is really what you are paying for.

Price Shopping –Can you tell the value?

Sometimes a lower price treatment represents a lower amount of material –Botox or filler.  Or the service is stripped down in some other way.  The service may seem the same but may be very different.  For example, liposuction of two areas.  You may have obtained consultations for what may seem to be the same service with significantly different prices from different providers.  There are multiple potential issues here.  Is the procedure being performed in an accredited operating room under the safest conditions?  What volume will be removed?  A 500 cc liposuction and a 2000 cc liposuction will get you to a different endpoint in terms of improvement.  How does the surgeon divide up the areas –some split up into multiple areas such as upper and lower abdomen where others will count the whole abdomen as a single area.   Therefore, you can see that while the service may seem the same, the actual value of the service may differ in more ways than simply the price tag.

Low price with small amounts may require repeating a treatment more frequently.  For example BotoxTM treatments with just a few units may need to be repeated monthly with a higher overall cost than a more expensive single treatment that lasts several months (3, 4 or even 6 months) even though the cost of a single treatment is lower.

Again, if there is no consultation and no plan, you are becoming the planner and not taking advantage of the physician’s expertise.  Professional assessment helps you stay on track to achieve your beauty goals –most completely and most efficiently.

Doctor Shopping

Too many opinions can be too much information.  It can be confusing.  Each physician has his or her own approach and knows what works well in their hands.  A couple of second opinions is usually a good idea but more make it difficult to decide what to do.  Another example is fragmentation of services.  Some patients have a BotoxTM doctor and a filler doctor and a laser doctor and a facelift doctor and someone else helping with skin care.  Using a different doctor every time or for each phase of your beauty treatment makes it impossible to have a coordinated care plan.    Too many cooks spoil the soup.


Pick a quality provider not cut rate treatments.

Avoid a different doctor every time –no plan, no refinement based on results of the last treatment.

Find real value rather than false economy.

You face is how the world sees you.  You can’t trade in your face so you have to take care of it.  It is a poor place to economize.