Board Certification or Bust

 board cer·ti·fi·ca·tion


  1. the process of examining and certifying the qualifications of a physician or other professional by a board of specialists in the field.




  • Plastic surgery is a SPECIALTY. Only a handful of the 24 medical specialties recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties include surgical training.
  • On average, a plastic surgeon undergoes sixteen years of post-high school education including extensive studies on anatomy, circulation, physiology, ventilation and fluid/electrolyte balance. This training is imperative when it comes to handling patient emergencies
  • Board-certified plastic surgeons undergo over five years of surgical training – including a plastic surgery residency program that focuses on reconstruction as well as aesthetics of the face and body.
  • Plastic surgeons study reconstruction as well as balance and proportion.



“Plastic Surgeons” versus “Cosmetic Surgeons”:


All plastic surgeons can perform both reconstructive procedures as well as cosmetic aesthetic procedures while a cosmetic surgeon may not be able to perform reconstructive procedures.

Any licensed physician can call themselves a “cosmetic surgeon”.

Cosmetic surgeons can sometimes be misleading – often stating they are board-certified – while they may be board-certified in their specialty (which may be internal medicine), they are not board certified plastic surgeons.

Also worth noting, the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery is not recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties.

As always, do your research, ask your questions, speak to patients. For even more information on board certifications, visit and



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