The neck lift is a popular procedure for individuals who are bothered by aging signs in the neck and jawline, including jowls, a turkey waddle or turkey neck, and neck bands. While able to produce dramatic improvement for a more youthful and contoured neck, with it comes a measure of risk. Risk is a fact of life with all surgical procedures.

Minimizing risk is your first consideration when planning neck lift surgery. The process actually starts long before the actual procedure itself. It begins with finding the best surgeon for the job.

It’s not as easy as it sounds. Just as you wouldn’t hire an inexperienced electrician to fix the wiring in your home, you wouldn’t sign on with an untrained or uncertified plastic surgeon to work on your sagging jawline. The results could be bad – even catastrophic.

Plastic surgeons with decades of professional experience in performing neck lifts are in agreement that it’s best to go with the most qualified surgeon to ensure proper results. Well-qualified facial plastic surgeons come with elite credentials. This means they have performed hundreds of procedures and the results have been proven natural looking. Many of these surgeons have 20 or more years of post-training experience.

Many plastic surgeons today pay lots of money on advertising to attract clients, just as with any type of business. But did you know that one of the most reliable ways of finding the facial plastic surgeon that’s best for you is by word of mouth? It sounds old school but it’s true. Satisfied patients waste no time spreading the word about their results and singing the praises of the surgeon who achieved them.

Plastic surgeons with excellent track records also are most welcome at hospitals to perform surgeries. Hospitals don’t take chances on risky surgeons, so this is a big plus for the doctor performing your neck lift. Even if your neck lift isn’t performed in a hospital, hospital privileges are an indication that a surgeon has met certain requirements regarding their education, training and experience.

Most surgeons nowadays host professional web sites and update them routinely. This not only is a cost-effective way to reach out to potential clients, it is a standing testimonial to the surgeon’s training, certification, and expertise. The professional website provides a detailed list of the procedures offered as well as patient reviews, which serve as a kind of benchmark for professional success. It’s also a great way to see the doctor’s work by viewing before and after neck lift photos.

When choosing a neck lift surgeon always make sure he or she has the professional training and hands-on experience performing neck lifts and is board certified. This ensures that the surgeon to which you may be entrusting your facial appearance is the real deal. There are too many unqualified practitioners out there claiming to be otherwise. In the end, you may get what you pay for, but you certainly don’t deserve a botched procedure by an unskilled, poorly trained surgeon if you can avoid it.

The American Board of Facial Plastic Surgery is a good place to start your online research on specific doctors. Shop around, be diligent in your effort, and make sure your choice is based on what you know, not what you don’t know or want to know later on. In general, there is no specific rule or set of rules when you’re in the market for a good neck lift surgeon. Sometimes, it takes several consultations involving multiple doctors before you find the surgeon you are most comfortable with.

Dr. Kyle S. Choe is a board certified facial plastic surgeon and hair restoration specialist with offices located in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Contact The Choe Center for Facial Plastic Surgery at 757.389.5850 for a personal consultation.