Plastic surgeons who spend inordinate amounts of time on social media may be adversely affecting peers’ perceptions of their practice or results, a new national survey suggests.
Most of social media’s two dozen most popular plastic surgeons (93%), have patient ratings on par with or above the nation’s very best surgeons.
Yet peers and medical professionals who voted on the “best surgeons” in the industry this year chose none of the famous as deserving of the title.
More than 350 plastic surgeons were this year named “America’s best,” by Newsweek magazine.
The rankings are based on 8,400 votes by more than 2,000 plastic surgeons and other medical professionals.
The industry’s most familiar public faces are all absent from the lists, which include the best 125-175 breast augmentation, liposuction, facelift, blepharoplasty, and rhinoplasty surgeons, according to peer votes.
In all, 358 plastic surgeons occupy 805 ranking positions across the five lists, as many surgeons were voted among the best in more than one surgical procedure.
Studies suggest board-certified plastic surgeons should have an active presence on social media in order to provide accurate information about the profession and its procedures.
How exactly to go about doing so, and how prolifically, are open to debate.
The more one shares, the more likely they are to say or do something that someone frowns upon.
Two of social media’s most popular plastic surgeons deleted their accounts after allegations of misconduct led to investigation by professional societies and regulatory agencies. A third is working to retain her medical license after being accused of breaching patients’ privacy and botching procedures.
Six of the 10 most popular plastic surgeons have also publicly shared a belief in breast implant illness, three of whom say they were chastised by colleagues for doing so.
Suggestive of the industry’s view of viral social media surgeons, colleagues refer to them as “influencers,” while failing or forgetting to acknowledge that they, too, are board-certified and are active members of the same professional societies the critics have belonged to.
While plastic surgeons with the strongest public-facing social media presence fared poorly in this years’ ratings, surgeons who are well-known or prominently placed within professional societies appear in multiple positions as “America’s best plastic surgeons.”