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A Guide to Critical Appraisal of Before and After Photos in Plastic Surgery


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by Dr. Steven Wallach

If you’ve been thinking of getting plastic surgery for a while now yet still undecided on the Manhattan plastic surgeon of your choice, you might want to consider reviewing a surgeon’s online photo gallery.

Although there are other variable factors to look at when deciding on a plastic surgeon — from credentials to board certifications to experience, most patients fail to thoroughly scrutinize and view a plastic surgeon’s gallery of before and after photos, both online and offline. Here’s why you need to explore photos further during personal consultations and not just rely on online galleries:

  • Some former patients allow for their photos to be reviewed only inside a surgeon’s office rather than posted online
  • During your consultation with Dr. Wallach, he can select photos of patients who have similar concerns and cosmetic preferences as you

So what should you look for in these photos? Dr. Wallach recommends that you pay special attention to the following:

  • Look for patients who are similar or close to your gender, age, height, weight, build, and ethnicity. This will help you visualize the results following surgery and provide you with a more realistic picture of the surgical outcome.
  • Check for the appearance of scars in photos. Any procedure which involves skin incisions will leave a scar but a highly experienced plastic surgeon like Dr. Wallach could make scars appear tiny and inconspicuous.
  • Check for consistency in lighting and pose of the patients. A good plastic surgeon will make it a point to consistently document results and avoid photo touch-ups.
  • Assess photos for symmetry and the surgeon’s sense of aesthetics.
  • In addition, figure out the number of patient photos that a surgeon is offering you for viewing. The number of photos is clue to a surgeon’s experience of the procedure you’re thinking of having.
  • Lastly, if you are not pleased with what most of what you see in the photos, keep looking. After all, it’s your body and appearance and you should not have the procedure unless you have total confidence in your plastic surgeon.

To schedule an initial consultation with Dr. Wallach for your queries on Manhattan plastic surgeries, contact our Manhattan office at (212) 861-6400 or by mail at 14 East 90th St. Suite 1B in New York, NY 10128. You can also fill out this contact form to request additional details. We are confident that you’ll find our before and after photos up to par with your standards, preferences, and cosmetic goals. We look forward to your visit!

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Melisa G.

New York, NY

I got Lipo 360 and Lipo done to my inner thighs and it was honestly the best experience . Everyone in the office including him make sure I knew everything that was happening and honestly I love the results so much !!

Brittani P.

New York, NY

I’m so happy with the results from the Botox shots that Dr. Wallach performed on me. He spent a lot of time talking about the different fillers that would make my face look the most natural and youthful.


New York, NY

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