CHOOSING A FACIAL PLASTIC SURGEON
When choosing to undergo facial plastic surgery, the most vitally important decision you will make is the selection of your plastic surgeon. Facial plastic surgery is a highly complex specialty, and in order to achieve optimal surgical results, your cosmetic facial surgery should be performed by a plastic surgeon who not only specializes in the field of otolaryngology (surgery of the head and neck), but is also board certified by a widely respected medical board. Board certification is a voluntary program through which plastic surgeons seek to develop their skills and demonstrate a strong commitment to their profession. Plastic surgeons can attain certification through a number of boards, and discerning exactly what board certification means and which boards are the most reputable may seem like a daunting challenge.
Dr. Trang Thuy Vo-Nguyen (Dr. V) is among an elite group of facial plastic surgeons in the state of Virginia who have achieved board certification through the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ABFPRS) and the American Board of Otolaryngology (ABOto), two of the most prestigious and highly esteemed facial plastic surgery boards in the industry. Below you will find information about what it means to be board certified by the ABFPRS and the ABOto. We have provided this information to help clarify the meaning behind the seemingly obtuse acronyms and medical language, and to highlight the importance of selecting a surgeon such as Dr. V., who has invested the time and effort necessary to achieve and maintain the rigorous standards of excellence demanded by the most prominent facial plastic surgery boards.
American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ABFPRS) Certification
The ABFPRS was established in 1986 as a means to raise the standards and overall quality of facial plastic surgery available to the general public by measuring the qualifications of candidate surgeons against a set of rigorously demanding standards. Attaining board certification through the ABFPRS means that a surgeon has met and maintained the following criteria:
- Completed an approved surgical residency in one of the two surgical specialties requiring identifiable training in all areas of facial plastic surgery: otolaryngology (head and neck surgery) or general plastic surgery
- Is double boarded, as a result of earning previous certification in one of those specialties through the American Board of Plastic Surgery, the American Board of Medical Specialties, the American Board of Otolaryngology, or the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada
- Successfully passed a two-day written and oral examination
- Has a minimum of 100 post-operative facial plastic surgery reports that have been accepted by a peer-review committee
- Has an acceptable record of at least two years’ clinical experience
- Operates in an accredited facility
- Holds proper medical licensure and adheres strictly to the ABFPRS Code of Ethics
American Board of Otolaryngology (ABOto) Certification
Otolaryngologists (head and neck surgeons) seeking certification through the American Board of Otolaryngology (ABOto) must pass psychometrically validated examinations, achieve the ABOto training requirements, and participate in a Maintenance of Certification program. For the ABOto, the certification process does not end after a candidate has passed the board’s examinations, but rather continues throughout the surgeon’s entire career. The rigorous standards set forth by the ABOto’s Maintenance of Certification program ensure an unwavering commitment to excellence and the highest of standards in surgical techniques and patient care.
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