About Mr. Peter Brooks PhD, FRCS(Plast)

 

Why I like doing cosmetic plastic surgery

The main reason I like doing cosmetic plastic surgery is because my patients regularly tell me how much of a difference surgery has made to their lives. I really feel it changes lives for the better and I like to think that I contribute something positive when patients have the outcome they want.

I feel I take time to listen carefully to my patients, to carefully check for any reason why their health may increase the chance of unwanted outcomes. It is essential that as much as possible all cosmetic procedures lead to a good outcome.

I also feel I understand what patients are wanting to achieve from treatment. I think I am successful in almost all cases in delivering a result that meets with my patients expectations, as each of my patients is different and each procedure needs to be tailored to their needs and how they are before treatment.

I make sure I give as much information as possible to allow patients to make good decisions and I take as much time as needed to answer all questions about the treatment before anything is done. On the day of surgery the only thing that should be on your mind is the operation not a whole lot of uncertainties about issues.

Each patient gets an information sheet about the surgery before they book in and before they have their operation they get a post-operative instruction sheet and a digital thermometer, so that once they are home after the surgery they have a guide for what to do.

 

My track record

Most people who come to see me are happy with the care they receive from the time we first meet to when they are discharged after their surgery or treatment. At patient feedbacks you will find all the feedback I have had since 2010. This feedback is official General Medical Council feedback for my annual Appraisal / Revalidation.  I have not included comments from cards or letters, because it is never clear where those testimonials really come from.

The feedback shows that almost all my patients are very happy with care they receive from me. In 2017 the feedback from 41 patients was all positive. There are occasions where patients of mine feel that things could have gone better, they are very small in number. It is inevitable that this is the case, since it’s simply not possible to delight everybody all of the time and we are after all dealing with body altering surgery.

The important point is that I am happy to share this information in order to be transparent and help you come to a decision about whether you can put your trust in my expertise. This year I had less than 3% acute complication rate all of which resolved. Last year I had no acute complications in my private practice, over my time in the private sector I have had around a 3% total complication rate. That is about 1 in 30 need to have a readmission to hospital or a return to theatre. Put it another way 97% have no clinical problems. Almost all of these problems occur in the first few days, are straight-forward and once dealt with have no impact on the long term outcome. Feel free to compare these figures with other surgeons.

There are sometimes minor problems with requiring dressing and wound care which are not icluded in these figures as they don’t require a return to hospital or stop people getting on with their lives.

Once everything as settled about 4% of my patients feel the result could be better. These patients have a tidy up procedure between 6 and 12 months. Most of these are under local anaesthetic and are walk in walk out for minor skin irregularities. There is no cost to the patient for correcting poor cosmetic results. My most recent figures continue to confirm this.

Sadly recently an organisation called PHIN has started to collect data on hospital readmission rates for individual surgeons. In the past I was very quick to offer even very minor cosmetic revision surgery, but everytime I bring someone back into hospital for a minor tidy up it is a mark against me name. In the future I will have to balance this consideration and it is likely some patients wont be offered free revisions when their problems are very minor.

I also give my time and expertise to the medical humanitarian organisation called ‘Medecins sans Frontiers’ (MSF) or ‘Doctors without borders’ (English translation), for who I have I have done two missions. On both occasions I went to Haiti to work in MSF’s most advanced trauma hospital. My work in Haiti was working with Orthopaedic and General surgeons on patients who had traumatic injuries. There were many gunshot wounds, traffic accidents and machete attacks; thankfully, not the sort of thing I regularly come across in my work in the UK. I helped the general surgeons with abdominal injuries and orthopaedic surgeons with fractures and they would help me do the plastic reconstructions on hands, arms legs and face.

While in Haiti, I also consulted and operated in the MSF Burns Centre. It was very intense work and I hope that through performing operations and helping train the local staff I have contributed something useful to Haiti’s medical staff long term. I find it very rewarding to help the Haitian people, who are living desperate lives and otherwise struggle to access the quality of medial care that we enjoy in the UK.

I am helping MSF with writing their medical training manuals and also with producing wound management guidelines for nurses. I am planning another mission probably to Gaza in 2017.

Qualifications

Because I have passed my Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons exam FRCS(Ed) I am no longer called Dr. Brooks, but now have the honorary title given to surgeons, which is Mr. Brooks. The MB;BS is my basic medical degree from the University of London. The FRCS(Plast) means I have passed the UK exam at the end of my training as a plastic surgeon. I have a PhD, which is an academic research doctorate from the University of Manchester in wound healing and scarring. Most plastic surgeons in the UK should have similar letters after their names.

My training in the NHS mainly dealt with burns, cancer and trauma to the face hands and body. During this time I became proficient in cosmetic procedures such as breast augmentations, facelifts and nose surgery on the NHS (for medical reasons), so by the time I went into private practice I had been properly trained in cosmetic procedures.

I enjoy research and teaching and am an instructor on the Advanced Trauma Life Support course and the Advanced Paediatric Life Support Course.

I have published and presented many original medical research papers in the UK and abroad and I am helping to write the plastic surgery manual for Medecins sans Frontiers.

In addition to my work as a surgeon, I provide medical opinion and expertise to the courts, when people have decided to sue their doctor or hospital due to poor care. I provide the medico-legal assistance to either the patient’s or the hospital’s legal teams.

Medical training

After I passed my medical degree I was lucky enough to work with two very respected plastic surgeons in my first medical job. I quickly realised that was what I wanted to do. I worked in a number of general jobs and got my first job in plastic surgery in Birmingham then went to the North East Thames Unit, which was in Billericay at that time.

After that I focussed on research and completed a PhD in wound healing in the University of Manchester. I am one of a very small number of plastic surgeons who had a research fellowship from the highly respected ‘Medical Research Council’. My PhD in wound healing gave me a very detailed insight into how the body responds to surgery and how it heals wounds, which I have taken with me into my everyday work as a surgeon.

After that I was lucky enough to get my first choice of training programme in Yorkshire, which had some of the most renowned Plastic Surgeons in the UK training on the programme. I learned a lot from a range of very talented and committed people. I passed my Final plastic surgery exam first time and went to Australia and New Zealand on a Fellowship where I focussed my time learning more about burns and plastic surgery.

I have worked as a Consultant Plastic Surgeon since 2007.

My interests

Not that this will affect surgery, but some patients like to know something about the person behind the surgeons gown. You are putting a great deal of trust in me, so it’s important to be comfortable with me as a person as well as a medical professional.

I have been married for nearly 20 years and have 4 lovely children.

Out of work, I am an enthusiastic musician and perform in public several times a year with my group. I also encourage my children in music who are reasonably accomplished, the oldest being at grade 8 in the piano and who sings in the local cathedral choir.

I collect and restore old motorcycles and musical instruments, as I enjoy working out how things work and putting them back together again.

I speak French, as I lived and worked in Paris for a while when I was younger, and have recently taken a European language exam (to work in Haiti), which has confirmed my French is at a good level.

I also enjoy reading, gardening and going on holiday to interesting places.