What is a Plastic Surgeon?
A Plastic Surgeon is a surgical specialist who has completed a minimum of 5 years of study and training in surgery after receiving a medical degree. He or she has demonstrated successful completion of training and passed a rigorous examination process overseen by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and is thus specifically qualified to practice reconstructive and aesthetic (cosmetic) plastic surgery.
Most people are familiar with cosmetic surgery. Plastic Surgeons are the experts in cosmetic surgery. However, many people do not realize that Plastic Surgeons also look after most of the hand and facial injuries in Canada. They manage most large wounds including burns. Canadian Plastic Surgeons treat a large number of patients with skin cancer, and they help the rehabilitation of breast cancer patients with breast reconstruction. They repair congenital deformities like cleft lips and abnormal hands. They participate in leg, hand, face, and skull reconstruction after severe accidents. In fact, if any part of the body is abnormal or needs reconstruction to restore function or appearance after birth, cancer or accidents, Plastic Surgeons are there to help.
A variety of cosmetic procedures both surgical and non-surgical are provided in Canada. Not all practitioners are surgeons or plastic surgeons. To ensure that your doctor is a certified specialist in plastic surgery, a number of organizations in Canada can help:
- Canadian Society of Plastic Surgeons (800-665-5415)
- Quebec Association of Specialists in Plastic and Aesthetic Surgery (514-350-5109; http://www.ascpeq.org )
- Canadian Society for Aesthetic (Cosmetic) Plastic Surgery (800-263-4429; www.csaps.ca )
- Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (800-668-3740; www.rcpsc.medical.org)
- The College of Physicians and Surgeons of your province: http://rcpsc.medical.org/links/provli_e.php