Unhappy Patients Can Turn into Angry Patients: How to Deal with Both

Amanda E. Dilger, Jonathan M. Sykes

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Patient satisfaction is the ultimate measure of success in cosmetic facial plastic surgery. A successful outcome depends on patient selection, technical performance, and postoperative care. Patient perception can be influenced by physician–patient interactions. Surgical training focuses on diagnosis—identifying variations in physical condition and treatment. Although these skills are essential to a well-trained and successful facial plastic surgeon, the importance of proper patient selection, management of expectations, and empathetic communication in cosmetic surgery are often overlooked in education and cannot be understated. This article outlines the contributing factors to difficult physician–patient relationships and strategies for mitigating these situations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)461-468
Number of pages8
JournalFacial Plastic Surgery Clinics of North America
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2020


  • Aesthetic surgery
  • Body dysmorphic disorder
  • Difficult patients
  • Facial plastic surgery
  • Outcomes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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