Why Does Board-Certification Matter When Choosing a Plastic Surgeon?

You’ve decided that you are ready to have work done and you’re ready to choose a plastic surgeon. But, when doing so, it’s important to remember that not all ‘cosmetic surgeons’ are board-certified with the American Board of Plastic Surgery. That slightly lower price tag or immediate opening may be a warning sign indicating a possible lack of training or credentials. So, what’s the big deal?

Board-certification with the ABPS requires meeting rigorous educational and training programs. After completing an undergraduate degree (4 years) and a graduate medical degree (additional 4 years), plastic surgeons must undergo an additional 5 years of surgical training. Of those  years, three must be dedicated solely to plastic surgery before being considered by the ABPS.

Regular continued education is also required. Surgeons must have both the knowledge and skill in the latest surgical techniques and technologies. Both written and oral exams are given to each potential ABPS member. Board-certified doctors have the experience it takes to prevent and handle complications that may arise.

Surgeons are held to strict safety and ethical codes as well. The American Board of Plastic Surgery examines and ensures surgical facilities are accredited, and state-licensed or Medicare-licensed. Equipment, operating room safety, and personnel are also taken into account.


Dr. Tenley Lawton is a highly-skilled board-certified plastic surgeon in Newport Beach, CA. She combines her knowledge and training with her passion for changing lives for the better. She creates personalized care for each, and every patient. Dr. Lawton specializes in breast surgeries, liposuction, tummy tucks, facelifts, mommy makeover procedures, and more.

Ready to learn more? Simply fill out the form on this page or call Tenley K. Lawton M.D. at (949) 640-0999 to schedule your consultation with Board-Certified plastic surgeon Dr. Tenley Lawton serving Newport Beach and the greater Orange County, CA area.

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