Your First Consultation with Dr Craig Rubinstein


What Happens at Your First Consultation with Dr Craig Rubinstein – One of the Most Experienced Plastic Surgeons in Melbourne, VIC

A formal first consultation with Dr Craig Rubinstein is an essential step before any surgical procedure can be planned. The first consultation can be done either virtually as an online telehealth consultation or in person at the clinic.

Please allow up to 1.5 hours for your initial appointment

It is very important to establish a strong relationship with your surgeon prior to any surgery. You will spend time with both your surgeon and patient care coordinator/nurse at your first consultation appointment.

Do I Need to Bring a GP Referral?

Due to new guidelines set forth by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA), it is now a requirement, effective July 1st, 2023, to obtain a referral before scheduling an appointment with a plastic surgeon. This means that individuals seeking plastic surgery will need to consult with their general practitioner or another healthcare professional who can assess their condition and provide a referral to a plastic surgeon.

The purpose of this referral system is to ensure that patients receive appropriate care and that their medical needs are properly assessed before undergoing any surgical procedures. By requiring a referral, the healthcare system aims to increase patient safety and ensure that individuals receive the most suitable treatment for their specific circumstances.

In addition to facilitating the initial consultation, a referral is also necessary to access specific requirements. For instance, having a referral is a requirement to qualify for Medicare rebates, which can help offset some of the costs associated with plastic surgery. Similarly, if you have private health insurance coverage, a referral is required to make a claim for insurance coverage related to the surgical procedure.

It is important to understand that these new guidelines aim to streamline the process, ensuring patient care and appropriate oversight of plastic surgery procedures. By seeking a referral, patients can obtain guidance from their general practitioner or healthcare professional, who can assess their medical condition, discuss potential treatment options, and provide appropriate recommendations for specialist care.

Who Should I Bring with me?

Bring a support person

We suggest you bring a supportive friend or relative to your appointment. They can provide emotional support, help you remember important information discussed during the consultation, and offer an additional perspective on your surgical options.

Having a trusted companion present can help alleviate any anxiety or stress you may feel during the appointment and ensure that you have a clear understanding of the information provided by the plastic surgeon. They can also serve as a sounding board for any questions or concerns you may have, helping you make well-informed decisions about your surgical journey.

Leave child at home

If you have children and it is possible, it is advisable to arrange to leave your children in the care of a trusted friend or family member during the appointment. This will allow you to fully focus on the consultation and have an uninterrupted discussion with the plastic surgeon.

Do your own research

Conduct thorough research on the procedure you are considering before your initial consultation. This will help you gather important information and have a better understanding of the procedure, its potential outcomes, risks, and any questions you may have.

By educating yourself about the procedure beforehand, you can arrive at the consultation with a solid foundation of knowledge. This will enable you to engage in a more meaningful discussion with the plastic surgeon, discuss your research findings with the plastic surgeon, seek their expert opinion, and gain further clarity about the procedure’s suitability for your unique circumstances.

Remember, while research is valuable, it should supplement rather than replace the professional advice and guidance provided by the plastic surgeon. They will assess your individual situation, discuss your goals, and tailor a treatment plan specifically for you during the consultation.

In summary, thorough research prior to your initial consultation will help you get a better understanding, enable informed discussions, and contribute to a more productive and satisfying consultation experience.

During Your First Consultation

During your consultation, Dr Rubinstein will conduct a comprehensive review of your medical history, including past health conditions, medications, and previous surgeries. This thorough assessment is important to ensure a clear understanding of your overall health and any factors that may impact the surgical procedure.

Dr Rubinstein will take the time to listen to your goals and expectations from the surgery. Understanding your desired outcomes allows him to tailor the treatment plan to meet your specific needs and provide realistic expectations.

Physical Examination

As part of the consultation, he will perform a detailed physical examination. This examination helps assess your clinical situation, evaluate the quality of your skin and tissues, and determine your suitability for the surgery.


In addition, if your consultation involves procedures that require implants, such as breast augmentation, Dr. Rubinstein will discuss the various implant options available to you. He will explain the different types of implants, their sizes, shapes, and materials, and help you make an informed decision based on your specific goals and individual anatomy.

Surgical Options

Then, he will provide a comprehensive explanation of your surgical options. He will discuss the procedural details, the expected outcomes, and the potential complications and risks associated with the surgery. This open and honest discussion is essential for your informed decision-making process and ensures that you have a realistic understanding of what to expect.

Risks and Complications

It is important to note that the discussion of risks and complications is not intended to scare or alarm you, but rather to fulfil Dr Rubinstein’s duty of care to prioritise your safety and well-being. It is a standard practice that any reputable plastic surgeon should follow. Transparency regarding the potential risks helps you make an informed decision and ensures you have realistic expectations about the surgery’s outcomes.

After you have attended the mandatory consults you will need to have a 7-day cooling off period before you are able to book a surgery date, should you decide to proceed with surgery.

After Your Consultation – Cooling off period

Once you have completed the necessary consultations with Dr Rubinstein and his team, there is a mandatory 7-day cooling-off period before you can proceed to book your surgery date. This cooling-off period is designed to give you ample time to carefully consider your decision and ensure that you are fully prepared both mentally and emotionally for the surgical procedure.

During this cooling-off period, it is important to take the time to reflect on the information discussed during the consultations, review any additional questions or concerns that may have arisen, and evaluate your readiness for surgery. This waiting period allows you to make a well-informed decision and gives you the opportunity to discuss any lingering doubts with Dr Rubinstein or his team before proceeding.

The cooling-off period is an essential component of the process to ensure that you have sufficient time to fully weigh the potential outcomes, risks, and implications of the surgery.

By adhering to this cooling-off period, you can proceed with surgery feeling assured that you have taken the necessary time to consider all aspects of the procedure and that your decision is based on careful thought and consideration.


Following your consultation, we will provide you with a comprehensive quote that includes a detailed breakdown of the costs involved, including;

  • Surgical fees
  • Anesthesia fees
  • Facility/hospital fees (operating room expenses, equipment and staff)
  • Pre and Post-operative Care
  • Implants and medical devices – including compression garments
  • Medications are dressings
  • Laboratory fees
  • And other additional services

This quote will outline all the necessary fees and expenses associated with your procedure, ensuring complete transparency and clarity. We understand the importance of knowing the financial aspects of your cosmetic surgery journey, and our goal is to provide you with a clear understanding of the investment required for your desired treatment. Should you have any questions or require further clarification, our team is always available to assist you.

About Dr Craig Rubinstein

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Dr Craig Rubinstein FRACS (Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons) is an experienced Melbourne Specialist Plastic Surgeon for breast and abdominoplasty surgery.

Dr Rubinstein offers women personalised abdominoplasty surgery and all forms of cosmetic breast surgery.

BOOK A CONSULTATION (03) 8849 1400

Next Steps in Your Surgical Journey

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Want more information about your Procedure?

  • Download a Free Procedure Guide on your chosen surgery.
  • Visit the FAQs and read patient reviews to learn more about your intended procedure.
  • For more information about pricing visit our cost page.
  • You can also talk to our Patient Care Team from 9 to 5 pm Monday to Friday on (03) 8849 1400

Coco Ruby Plastic Surgery

About Your First Consultation

  • Dr Rubinstein’s Consultation fee is $300.
  • A referral from your GP or specialist is essential.
  • A referral helps when claiming Medicare or Private Health Insurance coverage.
  • Please contact the Patient Care Team at Coco Ruby Plastic Surgery to book your consultation.

What to Bring to Your Consultation

  • You are more than welcome to bring a friend or relative to help discuss the information and your choices.
  • Ensure you also take a lot of notes and thoroughly examine the documents provided.
  • Please be aware you may need to undress for a physical exam so wear simple clothes.