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10,000 hours to become an expert

By Dr. Sutton Graham on April 21, 2009


Outliers is the title of a recent book by Mr. Malcom Gladwell about high achieving individuals. One of the observations he makes is that extensive experience in one's field is needed to become an expert. His 10,000 hour rule has reached the status of pop culture recognition. Ten years or 10,000 hours of dedicated work in a specific endeavor is generally required to achieve a high level of expertise. This applies to fields as varied as music and business. Plastic surgeons have much more.

Plastic surgery training generally consists of about 10 years. By the time a new plastic surgeon is board-certified he or she has had 4 years of medical school, 6-8 years of residency training and 1-2 years of independent practice. Cosmetic or aesthetic surgery is part of that training.

On top of that, aesthetic & breast surgery has been the entire focus of my practice for more than 12 years. I have been honored to care for tens of thousands of patients. My work is probably the most enjoyable of any specialty within the practice of medicine. Patients want to come to a plastic surgeon and love what we do.

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"I am very pleased with Dr. Graham and his staff! They have been incredibly kind and helpful throughout my surgery. The post-op care has also been top notch! They always respond to my concerns right away, and I always feel well cared for, and listened to."

Mary V.

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