For the past four years we’ve held the position that board-certification in a cosmetic medicine specialty matters for patient safety and satisfaction. Now, we’re thrilled to share that data from our community backs this up. “Our data indicates that the highest degrees of satisfaction and most reliable outcomes occur when patients are in the hands of physicians with proven and documented training in cosmetic surgery procedures,” says CEO Tom Seery. “ has analyzed tens of thousands of self-reported consumer reviews across hundreds of cosmetic procedures that were posted to the site. Our data shows patient satisfaction rates are 15% higher on average among those who had procedures performed by doctors that qualify for participation on RealSelf – board-certified aesthetic experts, versus doctors from other fields of medicine*. For instance, ER doctors are legally allowed to do liposuction, and gynecologists may perform breast augmentation, and even psychologists are offering Botox.” The most staggering differences in satisfaction were in the injectables category — procedures that can legally be performed at a medspa or home “Botox party,” without needing an MD or DO.

Surgical procedures showed increased satisfaction as well:

Liposuction saw the most dramatic increase among invasive procedures – satisfaction was 24% higher with board-certified core-aesthetic doctors vs. all providers.

What does this mean for the potential patient? “It means that for many cosmetic surgery procedures, consumers are reporting much better results from care delivered by board-certified physicians specialized in cosmetic surgery, and this should play a factor in their decision making process when choosing their provider,” says Tom. Know your doctor’s credentials. Check out their RealSelf profiles, and ask these important questions before choosing your provider. In the end, it could end up being the difference between your procedure being Worth It or Not Worth It.