Can you trust cosmetic surgery review sites?

Review sites have become part and parcel of our everyday life. After all, who stays in a hotel nowadays without checking out Tripadvisor, or goes for a meal without seeing what a local blogger thinks of it? The same is even truer with cosmetic surgery, where the stakes are even higher (after all, you can’t leave cosmetic surgery like you can a bad restaurant!). However, it’s always important to take whatever you read with a pinch of salt. Like any reviews you come across, the people who are the most motivated to write are usually those who have had a bad experience. Many people who’ve had a positive cosmetic surgery experience want to keep the results to themselves, as it is such a personal thing to do. And unhappy patients are always more vocal than satisfied ones. Online forums, message boards, and product and service reviews play a vital role in providing a different source of information for the important decision of undertaking cosmetic or aesthetic procedures. However, if you hadn’t already noticed, with an increasing amount of competitors offering cosmetic surgery, a disturbing trend has arisen. Unethical companies make use of these online platforms to push their services – by posing as a patient and condemning the services and reputations of their competitors. So if you’re wondering whether review sites can be 100% trusted, the answer is no. There is no guarantee that all of the reviews were written by genuine patients. You can’t know for sure if it is a real person or just a competitor writing as an anonymous patient in order to defame the other party, unless you go all the way and actually contact the person who wrote the posts. As you read the forums, we recommend that you follow some of the steps below before making a decision based solely on online reviews:

1)  Keep your cynical side in check when reading online forums and message boards

2)  Try to examine the surgeon’s pre-op and post-op photos

 3) Obtain second or third opinions from different surgeons. After that, take as much time as you need to decide which doctor best addresses your needs – never feel pressured to take a decision lightly

 4) Ask your doctors if you can speak to some of their former patients and look at their before and after photos. Should the medical centre not allow you to speak to their previous clients, then it could be time to move on elsewhere. At Beverly Wilshire Medical Centre, our doctors are more than willing to put patients in touch with the past ones – after all, we know that this is an important step in the decision making process

5)  Before you decide on any cosmetic surgery, make sure that you have a realistic goal – and that you understand exactly what procedure your surgery will follow, so that you aren’t disappointed because of a misconception on what was achievable

Do keep in mind that even the world’s best surgeons will always have one or two negative reviews that you’ll come across online. Every type of surgery has risks and might be prone to complications, and not all patients necessarily get the exact results that they envisioned as they might have had very unrealistic goals. Of course, if you find multiple bad reviews for a specific doctor or medical centre, that should raise a red flag and is worth paying attention to. Take the time to examine what their specific complaints are about, and you can always ask your doctors about these negative reviews to hear their side of the story. Ultimately, it all depends on your own judgment to make your decision. How did you do your research for your cosmetic procedure?