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Physicians who conduct surgical and reconstructive procedures on patients are plastic surgeons. These can include optional courses, from rhinoplasty or breast augmentation, a preventive procedure such as 'micro' facial lifts, to retro-operative operations, such as deformity repairs or burning skin accidents. A plastic surgeon needs years of intensive preparation.

The educational journey starts with a four-year bachelor's degree, followed by a medical school that takes another four years to finish, and then an internship that typically lasts around six years. To become a plastic surgeon, you won't require a different undergraduate degree, although some courses are mandatory for you to take during your medical school days.

Some universities have premedical programs that allow students to choose classes to prepare them for medical education according to their major, so you won't have to search for the course out of your university if you aim to become a plastic surgeon.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a plastic surgeon. For example, did you know that they make an average of $177.18 an hour? That's $368,541 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 7% and produce 55,400 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Plastic Surgeon Do

There are certain skills that many plastic surgeons have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed communication skills, dexterity and leadership skills.

Learn more about what a Plastic Surgeon does

How To Become a Plastic Surgeon

If you're interested in becoming a plastic surgeon, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 33.5% of plastic surgeons have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 9.0% of plastic surgeons have master's degrees. Even though most plastic surgeons have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a plastic surgeon. When we researched the most common majors for a plastic surgeon, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or associate degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on plastic surgeon resumes include master's degree degrees or doctoral degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a plastic surgeon. In fact, many plastic surgeon jobs require experience in a role such as medical assistant. Meanwhile, many plastic surgeons also have previous career experience in roles such as staff nurse or administrative assistant.

Average Salary for a Plastic Surgeon

Plastic Surgeons in America make an average salary of $368,541 per year or $177 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $624,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $217,000 per year.
Average Plastic Surgeon Salary
$368,541 Yearly
$177.18 hourly
$217,000
10 %
$368,000
Median
$624,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Plastic Surgeon Education

Plastic Surgeon Majors

24.7 %

Plastic Surgeon Degrees

Bachelors

33.5 %

Certificate

20.2 %

Associate

19.7 %

Top Colleges for Plastic Surgeons

1. Case Western Reserve University

Cleveland, OH • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,042
Enrollment
5,131

2. Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$18,454
Enrollment
40,108

3. University of Virginia

Charlottesville, VA • Private

In-State Tuition
$17,653
Enrollment
16,405

4. Wayne State University

Detroit, MI • Private

In-State Tuition
$13,097
Enrollment
17,114

5. University of Akron

Akron, OH • Private

In-State Tuition
$11,463
Enrollment
13,676

6. Emory University

Atlanta, GA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,306
Enrollment
6,975

7. Kettering College

Kettering, OH • Private

In-State Tuition
$12,960
Enrollment
610

8. University of Connecticut

Storrs, CT • Private

In-State Tuition
$15,730
Enrollment
18,830

9. New York University

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

10. Maria College of Albany

Albany, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$15,140
Enrollment
876

Top Skills For a Plastic Surgeon

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 19.0% of plastic surgeons listed patient care on their resume, but soft skills such as communication skills and dexterity are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Plastic Surgeon Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Plastic Surgeon templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Plastic Surgeon resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Plastic Surgeon Demographics

Plastic Surgeon Gender Distribution

Female
Female
76%
Male
Male
24%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among plastic surgeons, 76.4% of them are women, while 23.6% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among plastic surgeons is White, which makes up 81.7% of all plastic surgeons.

  • The most common foreign language among plastic surgeons is Spanish at 85.7%.

Online Courses For Plastic Surgeon That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
So You Want To Be A Surgeon?
edX (Global)

The World Health Organization (WHO) projected urgent need of physicians and surgeons in the next decade and the Lancet Commissions 2015 report indicated the need for surgical services will continue to rise substantially from now until 2030, in particular in the low-income and middle-income regions. In light of the challenges of new diseases and increase in the aging population, medical and surgical care are ever more essential. The future needs more surgeons! What do surgeons do? What...

Trauma Emergencies and Care
coursera

Welcome to Trauma Emergencies and Care. In this course, you will learn about some of the mechanics and physics of trauma on the human body, and how this can cause injury. You will continue to expand your new vocabulary with medical terminology, and learn how to describe the different injuries you may see. You will also learn about the trauma system itself- and when it is important to transport patients to a trauma center. Then we will dive into specific injuries based on what part of the body ma...

Emergency Care: Pregnancy, Infants, and Children
coursera

Welcome to the final course of lectures in your quest to master EMT basics. In this course, we will cover some of the highest-stress patient populations: pregnant patients and kids, also known as pediatrics. To wrap up your EMT knowledge we will end this course with information about hazmat situations, extricating patients from tight spots and finally how you write a note about your patient care. You will learn to ensure it communicates what your assessment of the patient was, what interventions...

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Best States For a Plastic Surgeon

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a plastic surgeon. The best states for people in this position are Maine, New York, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire. Plastic surgeons make the most in Maine with an average salary of $256,867. Whereas in New York and Massachusetts, they would average $248,019 and $245,429, respectively. While plastic surgeons would only make an average of $244,565 in New Hampshire, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Maine

Total Plastic Surgeon Jobs:
39
Highest 10% Earn:
$302,000
Location Quotient:
4.45 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. North Dakota

Total Plastic Surgeon Jobs:
15
Highest 10% Earn:
$299,000
Location Quotient:
2.44 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. New Hampshire

Total Plastic Surgeon Jobs:
19
Highest 10% Earn:
$298,000
Location Quotient:
1.64 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Plastic Surgeons

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Top Plastic Surgeon Employers

Most Common Employers For Plastic Surgeon

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1Denver Health$369,837$177.812
2Merritt Hawkins$368,541$177.1810
3University at Buffalo$368,541$177.182
4Tri-Valley$368,541$177.182
5Marc's$368,541$177.181
6Sono Bello$368,541$177.181
7Rockford Memorial Hospital Association$368,540$177.181
8Watson Clinic LLP$345,203$165.962
9Enterprise Medical Recruiting$342,828$164.822
10Simon$341,528$164.202