Dr. Poulter has been practicing for over 30 years and thousands of patients have entrusted him with their care. Read on for more about why he chose a career in medicine and plastic surgery, what he enjoys most about his work, and what he enjoys outside of work!
Q: What first sparked your interest in medicine/surgery?
A: I first considered it during my senior year biology class with Mrs. Hove – I like tracking how food was digested and where the nutrients were absorbed in the body. I also had a parent with significant medical problems that left me wanting to be able to help, and I got a job as an ER aide and an EKG tech at the local hospital. In college, I majored in bio-pre med (as I figured I could transfer to something less rigorous if I decided I didn’t like medicine).
I was one of the first male orderlies at Carle Hospital (between my junior and senior years at University of Illinois). When I started medical school, I wanted to be the “Love Boat” doctor, taking care of all illnesses. However, I was paired with a plastic surgeon as an advisor and fell in love with that specialty. I took multiple plastic electives as I went to medical school year-round for four years, with no breaks.
Q: Why did you choose plastic surgery over other specialties?
A: As a medical student, my advisor gave me opportunities to observe and participate in clinics and surgery and the electives he was in charge of. I really liked the ability of the plastic surgeon to improve a patient’s confidence and self-esteem by correcting a congenital deformity, repairing areas of the body brutalized by trauma, reconstructing a breast following cancer, revising a scar that triggers bad memories, and correcting the changes motherhood and weight loss have delivered.
Q: How have you seen plastic surgery change throughout your career?
A: Breast implant options have come and gone and returned with the continued close surveillance on outcomes. The introduction of Botox and fillers completely changed facial rejuvenation. Breast reconstruction options have improved greatly. Surgical procedures for body contouring for massive weight loss patients help make incredible figures accompany the incredible improvement in health.
On the downside, more people are being injured by travel out of the country for surgical procedures, with many patients not returning or significantly harmed by the less controlled environments that of course are less expensive (remember, you get what you pay for!)
Q: What is the best advice you could give to potential patients or those considering surgery?
A: Work at becoming the healthiest patient you can be before plastic surgery and you will recover quicker, heal better, and have improved long lasting results. You might not even need the surgery once you adopt a healthy lifestyle.
Do your homework, get several consultations if needed. Make sure your surgeon is a board-certified plastic surgeon trained in residency to perform the procedure you are interested in and has hospital privileges to perform it as well. Not all cosmetic surgeons are plastic surgeons.
Q: What is your favorite part of what you do?
A: I love the first post-op visit when a patient says “this is just what I wanted to look like!” and “I had so little discomfort; thanks for taking the extra effort to make this happen.” I really enjoy helping brides and family members look their best for the big day. There have been more than a few tears from patients who have lost weight and complete their body contouring journey with surgery and are now able to wear regular sized clothing and not hide in a baggy shirt.
Q: What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
A: I enjoy outdoor activities with my wife, like cycling, golfing, kayaking, and walking. I also like playing drums with the praise band on occasion, traveling, relaxing in our back yard with mature plantings, listening to the morning cardinals and watching hummingbirds at the feeders.
Q: What is your favorite type of music?
A: Although classic rock will always win, I have allowed others in the OR to have a turn picking the music as well, which has opened my tastes to the whole gamut of available music. My children live in Texas and there are not any other radio stations there other than country, so I’m being trained well for when we relocate upon retirement!
Get to Know
Dr. Jeffrey Poulter →
An experienced plastic surgeon. Dr. Poulter is committed to your beautiful results with minimal discomfort and downtime.