Commonly Asked Questions
How do I select a surgeon?
Choosing your surgeon is a very personal decision. Factors including training, board certification, personality, office location, staff support and surgeon skill should be considered. A general feeling of comfort and confidence as well as a shared understanding of surgical expectations and goals are very important. You should review before and after photos of procedures or surgeries performed by your surgeon and like the results you see. An excellent place to begin your search is checking for board certification. The American Board of Medical Specialties (main governing board in the United States) certifies plastic surgeons who have completed a rigorous and complete training (minimum of six postgraduate years after medical school) and who have demonstrated safety and knowledge through the review and examination of a minimum of 50 surgical cases in practice.
Do I need a consultation?
A consultation is the essential first step in your desire to refine, restore or enhance your appearance, whether surgically or through non-surgical treatments. It is important for you and Dr. Shifrin to meet, discuss your desires, and to ask questions. At this point he can individually recommend treatment options and you can gain an appreciation for realistic outcomes.
What happens during a consultation?
Your consultation begins with an introduction to our practice by a member of our staff. You will share your medical history and discuss your goals. You will then meet with Dr. Shifrin and his assistant for a personalized evaluation. If necessary, you will be given time to disrobe in private before your examination. All examinations include Dr. Shifrin and our Patient Care Coordinator who is present to advocate on your behalf. Dr. Shifrin will then offer individualized recommendations regarding the best treatment options available to you. The consultation concludes with time for answering any questions and providing you the information you may need to make a completely confident, well-informed decision. You may schedule your procedure if you elect to undergo treatment.
Do I need to schedule surgery at my consultation?
No. You may schedule surgery at any time that is appropriate for you, whether at the time of your consultation or in the future. Surgeon fees presented at your consultation are valid for 6 months from the date of your consultation. Surgery center, anesthesia or recovery fees may change.
What if I have questions after my consultation?
You may contact our office and Patient Care Coordinator at any time after your consultation with questions. Dr Shifrin is available for questions as well. We encourage our patients to ask as many questions as necessary and believe that proper education is essential for an enjoyable experience. If necessary we can schedule a second consultation for continued in person discussion.
Do I have to have photographs taken?
Photographs are an important part of your medical record and also serve as a reference for Dr Shifrin throughout the course of your care. You will sign a specific consent for photographs allowing Dr. Shifrin to use these for educational, research and marketing purposes. If you are uncomfortable with your photographs being used for purposes other than your medical record, inform us and we will respect your wishes. If you are coming for a facial consultation, please keep makeup to a minimum so Dr. Shifrin can better evaluate and photograph your natural appearance, both before and after surgery.
Can a friend/family member accompany me to my consultation?
You may choose to bring a family member or friend to support you during your consultation. However, the decision to undergo treatment is one that is yours to make alone.
Where does Dr. Shifrin perform surgery?
Minor procedures may be performed in our in-office procedure room. Outpatient procedures are performed in the Southwest suburb of Mokena at the Center for Minimally Invasive Surgery and downtown in the city at the River North Surgery Center. Dr Shifrin maintains hospital privileges at Franciscan St James hospitals in Olympia Fields, Illinois and Chicago Ridge, Illinois and Community hospital in Munster, Indiana.
Can I choose where my procedure will be performed?
Dr. Shifrin will discuss the options of where to schedule your surgery, and make a recommendation to you. If you have a preference, please share this during your consultation and we will accommodate your request whenever possible.
May I elect the type of anesthesia used?
Dr. Shifrin and the anesthesiologist will determine what form of anesthesia is best for you. The choice of anesthesia is determined with your safety in mind.
May I elect inpatient or outpatient surgery?
Dr. Shifrin will discuss and recommend the best option for you. Inpatient care may be required in some cases. Outpatient care offers you a variety of options for your recovery.
What is accreditation?
Accreditation is a review process that demonstrates a surgical facility meets specific standards of safety and operations. All of the facilities in which Dr. Shifrin operates are fully accredited to meet safety standards for the class and type of procedures performed at the facility.
What are the risks of surgery?
The risks associated with each procedure vary and will be thoroughly discussed with you during your consultation. You will have ample opportunity to discuss these risks before giving consent or scheduling surgery. Significant factors to minimize your risks include:
- Selecting a qualified board-certified plastic surgeon (certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery) with experience and proper credentials.
- Surgery at a fully accredited surgical center or hospital.
- Anesthesia by a properly licensed anesthesiologist.
- A proper health screening prior to surgery.
- Following all of the pre- and post-operative instructions you are given including no smoking, and taking or avoiding certain medications and supplements.
What if I am anxious or afraid?
Anxiety is normal. However, if you feel at all apprehensive or afraid, please discuss this with Dr. Shifrin or our staff immediately. Being completely informed, in a supportive and private environment, and attended to by a surgeon and staff you trust are vital to your emotional and physical comfort.
Who is a candidate for plastic surgery?
The best plastic surgery candidate is someone with realistic expectations and an understanding of the limitations set by medicine, technology, and each patient’s body. Good candidates have a strong self-image, and well-developed reason for pursuing a plastic surgery procedure. They are looking for improvement of a physical trait, knowing that while this positive change may enhance their self-image, it will not change people’s perception of them.
Is plastic surgery covered by insurance?
When the plastic surgery procedure is being preformed for cosmetic reasons, insurance will not cover the costs. When the surgery is necessary for reconstructive purposes it may be partially or fully covered by insurance. Plastic surgery procedures that may be covered by insurance often include breast reconstruction (after mastectomy), rhinoplasty (the breathing problem portion), panniculectomy surgery (following a weight loss) and eyelid surgery (to correct vision problems.) Dr. Shifrin’s office will assist you in the filing and submitting of your claim for reimbursement.
What is the difference between Cosmetic and Reconstructive Surgery?
Cosmetic surgery is performed to enhance a healthy, normal, functioning, part of the body. Nothing but the patient’s desire for physical improvement necessitates the need for cosmetic plastic surgery. Reconstructive surgery, however, is intended to correct a physical abnormality caused by a birth defect, disease or tumor, physical trauma, or infection. The goal of reconstructive surgery may be to restore form and function.
How much pain is involved in plastic surgery?
Each plastic surgery procedure carries a different level of discomfort, and requires different methods of anesthetizing. Very minor, non-invasive surgeries might involve a topical anesthetic, while minor invasive surgeries may call for local anesthetic or local combined with sedation. In more involved surgery, general anesthesia is primarily used.
Is plastic surgery outpatient or inpatient?
Most plastic surgery procedures are performed on an outpatient basis. In some cases, usually when the surgery is very extensive or complications arise, Dr. Shifrin may require an overnight stay. Options and recommendations will be discussed during your consultation.
Where will I recover from surgery?
A consultation is the essential first step in your desire to refine, restore or enhance your appearance, whether surgically or through non-surgical treatments. It is mutually beneficial for you and Dr. Shifrin to meet, discuss your goals and to ask questions, in order that he may individually recommend your treatment options including recovery plans.
Who will care for me during my recovery?
If you are able to recover at home, you will be discharged with a responsible adult who must remain with you until your first postoperative visit. You may also elect to have a private nurse care for you at home. Our Patient Care Coordinator will help arrange as needed.
How long will my recovery take?
Every individual and every procedure is different. Your recovery will be discussed with you in detail during your consultation, including how you will feel, how to treat your incisions, potential bruises and medications to take for discomfort, and what you should and should not do during recovery.
When will I see Dr. Shifrin again after my surgery?
You will see Dr. Shifrin before you are released for your post-surgical care, whether your recovery will be at home or in a recovery center. When you are released, a member of Dr. Shifrin’s staff will fully explain the time and purpose of your next visit. Dr. Shifrin and his partner are available by phone round the clock for any questions or concerns that may arise.
What if I experience a complication, or have questions?
You will be given a full listing of potential signs of complication, as well as normal conditions to experience during recovery. If you have questions at any time during your recovery, please contact us immediately. Dr. Shifrin and his staff are readily available to take your calls and instruct you on what to do. Your experience is extremely important to us.