Many clients are thinking of going off the grid to get a little work done. They’re tapping into a growing trend. These days more and more people are seeking great doctors in locations beyond New York and Beverly Hills. But that doesn’t mean jetting off to an obscure operating room in South America; there are plenty of serene cities stateside for those who don’t want the crowds and fast pace of a big city. Board certified plastic surgeon and best selling author John Zannis, M.D., based in coastal North Carolina caters to patients from all over the world. Here are his dos and don’ts when it comes to Nip Tuck Tourism. Give these tips to potential clients to ensure they get the best doctors, support staff, post-op recovery, and overall experience.
Do: Consider a smaller city. When it comes time for recovery, resting and avoiding stress is key. Smaller cities have a cozy, home away from home feel. Imagine going outside for a walk or sitting peacefully outside with sounds of nature instead of traffic. Being in a serene environment helps you heal.
Don’t: Skimp on the pre-arrival consultation and follow up communication. Verifying that you are a candidate for the procedure you want is extremely important before flying anywhere. Be ready for a few Skype consults with your surgeon, sharing pictures and keeping in touch over phone and e-mail leading up to your scheduled procedure.
Do: Consider your physician’s lodging recommendations. Many doctors already have relationships with local hotels and bed and breakfasts and can make solid recommendations. Your doctor will also know the type of accommodations you’ll need: will a simple suite do or do you need a full home-style living space for longer recovery procedures?
Do: Fly in a couple of days before your surgery is scheduled. This allows you to meet with the doctor and staff before the big day and become comfortable with your surroundings.
Do: Take the appropriate amount of time off. “Depending on the procedure, you’ll be able to return home in just 24 hours, while others may require a follow up visit in 7 days,” says Zannis. “You want to allow adequate healing time for any swelling and pain to subside before traveling back home.”
Don’t: Forget your insurance cards. Although most cosmetic procedures aren’t covered by insurance, you’ll still need your insurance information to get your prescriptions filled.
Do: Plan ahead and pack wisely. “It’s important to pack loose fitting zip front shirts and wide comfortable bottoms, a pillow to place between yourself and the car/plane seatbelt, a spill proof large water bottle, and throat relievers for post-op soreness,” says Zannis.
Do: Plan some nice activities and meals! Remember this is your time to relax, recover, and enjoy. Think low-key and relaxing. When you get your appetite back you’ll want a great meal. As days pass and more and more healing takes place you’ll want to go for nice walks, explore nature, or just read and unwind by a fireplace or lake. These little things contribute to making you feel better and heal after a procedure. You’ll return with a new look, while feeling completely refreshed.