As a Florida botched plastic surgery lawyer, I have seen first hand the results of cosmetic surgeries gone wrong. I think that hard economic times are forcing more and more Americans living with small breasts, sagging eyelids and paunchy stomachs to learn to live with their perceived flaws rather than turning to plastic surgery. Those that cannot, often search for “deals” or “clinics” in hopes of a quick fix. Some clinics operating around South Florida are not licensed, sterile or properly equipped in the event of a perioperative emergency.

Here are my recommendations if you are considering having plastic surgery in Florida with the hopes that you can avoid being a victim:

1. Verify that your doctor is licensed and has malpractice insurance. The Florida Department of Health has a quick link to verify your doctor’s credentials and coverage.

2. Verify that your doctor is Board Certified by the AMERICAN BOARD OF PLASTIC SURGERY.

3. Get a second and third opinion.

4. Get preoperative clearance from your own doctor or one that is independent from the surgeon.

5. Verify that the surgeon has staff privileges at a nearby hospital.

Taking chances on plastic surgery can cost you more than your looks. Take the time to educate yourself before you put your life in some-body’s hands.