10 questions to consider before a cosmetic procedure

It is in the interests of your face to ask yourself these 10 essential questions before undergoing an aesthetic procedure with a practitioner. Dr Nelly GAUTHIER will give you some useful questions.

The 10 questions to ask yourself before an aesthetic medicine procedure with Dr Nelly GAUTHIER

Do I really need this procedure?

Even if your friends have undergone aesthetic medicine, often with spectacular results, this does not guarantee that treatment will work as well for you. No two faces are alike, and character is found in the small details. For example, it is important to know that if facial volume is wrongly increased, you risk weighing the face down and, in the end, obtaining the opposite effect, i.e., ageing.
Do not hesitate to ask your loved ones for their opinion and trust their perception of you.

Who should I contact?

In fact, a large number of doctors (and non-doctors..!) offer these injections. The selection criteria for choosing a good doctor should be based on:
1- Qualifications: as a minimum, he/she should be registered in the Medical Council and, at best, should be a facial surgery specialist,
2- Experience: avoid doctors who are starting out, you will be their guinea pig which is dangerous for your face,
3- Reputation: this is a very important point because reputations are built over years and very often reflect reality.
Do not hesitate to ask to see many before and afters (in person or photos of previously treated patients)!

What should I expect from an aesthetic consultation?

Because you are liable to make a mistake and want something that would not suit you, make sure that the doctor listens to you, looks at you carefully, studies your face and takes time to reflect before agreeing to your request. And, if the doctor believes that your request is not suitable, he/she should be able to explain why.
Do not hesitate to ask for consultation time.
Some doctors will hardly look at you and will be prepared to inject you immediately after 10 minutes: be brave and leave!

How will the planned procedure take place?

The doctor must explain the following in detail: the procedure time, any possible pain before and after, the possibility of swelling and, consequently, the need to hide yourself for a few days.
Will the doctor need to see you again for possible adjustments or to check for any problems? If so, how long after?

Who will carry out the procedure?

Some doctors will speak to you about a medical procedure (like laser treatment or injections) and, on the day of treatment, leave you in the hands of their “assistant”. In this case, don’t be shy, and ask what this person’s qualifications are. These procedures must be carried out by a doctor or by a medical professional capable of handling any reactions you could have.

What are the risks and how are complications dealt with?

There is no such thing as zero risk, however, most complications in aesthetic medicine are successfully treated.
The doctor should clearly explain the risks of the procedure you are offered and the treatment of any complications that may arise. He/she must also guarantee that you will not have to pay any extra fees in this case. Do not hesitate to make the doctor clarify this.

Will this treatment interfere with medication I am taking or affect any allergies I have?

It is important that the doctor makes a note of the medication you are taking and any allergies you have had in the past. Taking medication can complicate treatment follow-up, and the existence of allergies will warn the doctor and lead him/her to act with greater caution. Likewise, if you suffer from herpes of the face, inform your doctor so that he/she can prevent an outbreak if treating the area where herpes appears.

What treatments/precautions are necessary before and after the procedure?

Can you go out into the sun, do exercise, go to a steam room or sauna, apply your usual creams, use skin care products, etc.
You should be informed, before the procedure, of the precautions to take and, if necessary, write them down.
Do not forget to ask how long these precautions need to be followed before and after the procedure.

How long does the result last?

There are many different filler products available in Europe, and they have different characteristics. The doctor must select the product that is best adapted to the part of the face you have chosen to treat. Above all, what’s most important for you is the safety and the duration of effectiveness of the product:

  • No serious doctor will take risks with the products he/she injects. It is therefore your choice of doctor that will guarantee your safety as regards the products used.
  • At present, resorbable filler products are preferred by doctors. This means that renewal procedures will take place more or less frequently. It is the doctor’s responsibility to advise you as to the frequency of this procedure.

Skin surface treatments (light, laser, peeling, etc.) must also be maintained, and it is important to know how often this maintenance is needed before beginning the treatment.

What is the price of this and does it include care and consultations just after the procedure?

Whatever the amount stated, if the questions listed above have not been completely and positively answered, you will need to continue looking for a good practitioner.

You may find a relatively cheap procedure – and at a discount – but that doesn’t mean it isn’t likely to leave you disfigured in the long run! And that’s without mentioning the price of the repair work…

So, be careful! Cheap deals in aesthetics are false friends: the starting price can hide a series of “additional” costs which end up being very expensive.

There is no urgency in aesthetics, and if what your face needs is more than you can afford: wait! A natural look is always more attractive than a botched job: for example, a wrinkle is more acceptable than a bump or an abnormal lump on your face.

Keep this clear from the beginning: will you have to pay again for care or treatment concerning this procedure? Normally, no. Everything should be included, and the cosmetic treatment should be carried out satisfactorily without additional costs for follow-up consultations.

Finally, in accordance with French legislation, the doctor must make you sign a prior informed consent and quote estimate. Only do this after having answered these 10 questions.