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On your quest for the right doctor, there are several very specific things you should look for when selecting your cosmetic gynecologist.

The field of Cosmetic Gynecology is growing rapidly, and that means, unfortunately, some doctors will perform these procedures without the adequate training.

Choosing the right doctor is of the utmost importance.

Dr. Mark L. Jewell, past president of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, said the advent of physicians from other fields performing cosmetic procedures was likely to confuse patients, who do not always investigate a doctor’s training when looking for a cosmetic medical expert. Even more confusing to consumers is many non-specialist physicians are marketing themselves using terms like “cosmetic surgeon,” “aesthetic surgeon” and “laser surgeon,” according to Dr. Jewell. He added, “Next thing you know, chiropractors will be doing liposuction. And psychiatrists will be ‘head surgeons,’ giving you Restylane and your Prozac.”

Frightening, indeed. At The Center for Cosmetic & Reconstructive Gynecology, we want you to know the vagina is a very complex organ, with complex nerves and muscles. Be wary of general gynecologists or plastic surgeons that perform these procedures, especially those who perform them at commercialized, unrealistic pricing. With something as sacred, important and delicate as your vagina, you must choose a specialist.

Here are a few, very important, things to look for when choosing the right surgeon:

Experience: How many surgical, gynecological, and cosmetic gynecological procedures has the doctor performed? How long have they been practicing and what is their reputation in their community and among their peers?

Advanced Training: Look for specific vaginal rejuvenation training – especially advanced training with leaders in the field.

Multiple Techniques: Look for a specialist who will design a procedure specifically for you, using a variety of methods and techniques, not just a one-size-fits-all approach. This can usually—but not always—be the sign of a doctor who has limited knowledge of available procedures, and uses their one “go to” method.

Honors: Has the medical community honored your doctor? Has the doctor given multiple medical contributions to the medical society? Has the doctor been asked to speak at different medical conferences both nationally and internationally? These are all important questions when checking the credentials of your doctor.

Photos: Check the doctor’s website and look at their picture gallery. See if the results are results you would be happy with. And most importantly, make sure that the pictures you are looking at are the doctor’s actual work, and are un-retouched. (You can see our gallery here.)

Testimonials: Ask to see testimonials from past patients, such as letters or emails of thanks and praise that complement the doctor’s work and overall experience at the office.

In addition to in-office testimonials and those on the doctor’s website, also check independent sources, such as Doctoroogle, Yelp, and Google Local Search to find out what past patients are saying.