Plastic Surgeons Are Mostly Men, But Their Patients Are Mostly Women
During our consultations for my rhinoplasty, Dr. Doft and I had discussed the fratty nature of surgery, and plastic surgery in particular. While she peered into my nasal hollows, I asked her why she thought my parents’ friends had steered me elsewhere, even though she’d graduated No. 1 from NYU’s medical school and had a list of accomplishments longer than my senior thesis.
Some 18 months later, I called her to ask more. “When I was going to my interviews, other surgeons or people I was doing research with in the lab said, ‘You come across as very feminine, Melissa. No one wants a feminine surgeon,’” Dr. Doft told me. Obviously, this was not entirely true. I am a woman, and I wanted her, chit-chat and all. But it’s not entirely untrue either. Just like doctors are trained to behave professionally, patients are trained to seek professional doctors. The world is changing slowly, but for the most part, the arbiters of professionalism continue to be men.