Personalized Care With Personalized Results World-Renowned Plastic Surgeon in San Diego

What Patients Say about Dr. James Chao.....

"Dr. Chao did a fabulous job of reconstruction for me."

"He is always positive and reassuring."

"Extremely professional, very helpful in a difficult time."

Meet Dr. Chao Compassion. Artistry. Innovation.

Dr. James Chao is one of an invitation-only group of board-certified plastic surgeons who have joined Prime Plastic Surgery, a collective of plastic surgeons with the highest credentials, the best surgical skills, and the top reputations in America. These world-renowned leaders in the plastic surgery field expertly perform complex reconstructive and cosmetic surgery procedures in technologically advanced, accredited on-site surgical centers. Like his colleagues, Dr. Chao follows the strictest of safety protocols at his state-of-the-art San Diego medical facility.

During his free time, Dr. Chao gives back to the community. He is a recipient of the Health Hero Award from Fresh Starts Surgical Gifts, which provides free reconstructive surgery to children. Also, he devotes his free time to mentor the next generation of plastic surgeons.

Meet Dr. Brown

Dr. Brown is a consummate professional who truly cares about each of his patients. He focuses on maximizing both procedure results and patient comfort. He is an effective listener, a trusted advisor and provides direct recommendations with a clear and caring communication style. Applying his surgical skill and intimate knowledge of human anatomy he artistically creates natural and remarkable results. Dr. Brown’s undergraduate and medical degrees were completed with high honors, and he completed a research fellowship at NYU. His residency training was completed in New York City with further advanced plastic surgery training at USCD. He enjoys surgical mission trips to Mexico where he volunteers his skills to repair cleft lips and palates for children.

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Prime Plastic Surgery...

The highest quality, highest credentialed, highest reputation class of surgeons in America. Operating in accredited facilities and mentoring the next generation of plastic surgery talent.

Combining Precision and Perfectionism The Prime Difference

With the imagination of an artist and the innovative, refined skills of a world-renowned plastic surgeon, Dr. James Chao of San Diego, CA, excels at the elusive gift of plastic surgery with precision and perfectionism. If you have been dreaming of achieving refined features that allow you to reach new heights in self-confidence, trust your care to a board-certified surgeon who has earned tremendous respect from academic and private practice colleagues.

Plastic Surgery
in San Diego

When you choose to have reconstructive or cosmetic surgery performed by Prime Plastic Surgery San Diego–our La Mesa surgical center located in the Greater San Diego area–our surgeon's board-certification means you have chosen a surgeon considered to be at the very top of their profession.


Why wait any longer to achieve the enhancements you want? Book your no-obligation consultation with our San Diego team today. You can arrange to meet our plastic surgeon in person or through an online video consultation.

Why Choose Prime Plastic Surgery San Diego?

Men and women in San Diego and beyond turn to Dr. James Chao because of his decades of experience, exceptional credentials, and reputation:

Combining the Best of the Best

Dr. Chao has provided his San Diego patients with spectacular, natural-looking plastic surgery results for over two decades. In addition, Prime allows him to focus on amalgamating the best plastic surgeons in the area together into a supergroup, where they can thrive in a new practice paradigm. 

About The Aesthetic Society

Expert Training & Board Certification

All Prime surgeons are board-certified plastic surgeons. Not all surgeons hold this distinction. This means he has completed substantial training beyond medical school and passed difficult oral and written comprehensive examinations by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. Our surgeons have also been invited to be examiners for the American Board of Surgery.

About the ABPS

State-of-the-Art Facilities

Prime Plastic Surgery's onsite surgical center meets the highest standards of safety established by the American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities, Inc (AAAASF), which is the gold standard of accreditation for office-based surgery facilities. Our Prime Plastic Surgery facility in San Diego is regularly inspected to make certain that we are meeting the strictest standards regarding patient safety, equipment, cleanliness, and other key factors.

About this Accreditation

Luxury Amenities & Patient Care

From the moment you enter our San Diego office, you will find that every detail has been carefully curated to ensure that you feel comfortable, welcome, and relaxed. From the soothing colors to the captivating art and comfortable seating, you can expect an environment tailored to your satisfaction.

Learn What Makes Us Different

Virtual Consultations Are Available

Prime Plastic Surgery follows all safety guidelines established by The Aesthetic Society's COVID-19 task force and remains in communication with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as state and local associations. Our surgeons have led numerous webinars around the world on how to make plastic surgery offices safer for patients and staff. You can also safely meet with the doctor from the comfort of your own home ... 

5-Star Reviews for Dr. James Chao "Dr. Chao did a fabulous job of reconstruction for me. Perfection!" 


Carmen Kolinek


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I could not be happier with Dr James Chao and his nurse Tracey! They are truly the best! After a very stressful year of breast cancer...mastectomy ....and reconstruction Dr. Chao did a fabulous job of reconstruction for me.  Perfection! He is always positive and reassuring...

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Samantha Rosenthal


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Dr Chao was wonderful. I felt very informed and aware of what was going on as we moved through the appointment with my 2 year old son. It can be so hard to have the appointments because my son doesn't understand and he was so sad. but today went great. I am so grateful for this wonderful team!

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Stunning Mommy Makeover Results

Before Mommy Makeover
After Mommy Makeover
This patient came to us with loose, excess skin on her abdomen after the birth of her child. Along with other procedures, a tummy tuck tightened up her abdominal region, giving her a more toned, slimmer profile.

Trim & Tighten Body Contouring

Do you dream of having your pre-pregnancy appearance back? Do you want to show off a shapelier, trimmer look while you are jogging along San Diego's Pacific Beach or kayaking at La Jolla Cove? With the help of one of the top plastic surgeons in America, you can. 

Dr. Chao is renowned for treatments that can address loose skin, target excess fat, and achieve a shapelier, more proportionate figure. He offers several procedures, including:

Book Your Consultation at Prime Plastic Surgery in San Diego

Enhancing your appearance through body contouring procedures and other plastic surgery treatments is a very personal journey that can be profoundly rewarding when you choose the right surgeon.

Prime Plastic Surgery's Dr. Chao is one of the most respected surgeons in the field and is recognized for his clinical excellence by his role as former plastic and hand surgeon for the San Diego Chargers NFL Football team and ESPN X Games.

To schedule your consultation with Dr. Chao, please contact Prime Plastic Surgery's San Diego practice online or call:

(858) 285-4667

Featured Procedures  by Experts at Prime Plastic Surgery

Prime Plastic Surgery provides a comprehensive range of surgical and non-surgical procedures to enhance the breasts, body, and face. Our board-certified plastic surgeon's most frequently performed procedures include:

Breast Augmentation

Breast augmentation can enhance or balance the size and shape of your breasts, improving your figure so you feel more confident about your appearance. Advanced techniques mean patients can enjoy more lifelike results than ever before. This procedure has been a popular choice among Dr. Chao's female patients for over twenty years.

Explore Breast Augmentation

Mommy Makeover

Pregnancy and childbirth can leave you with excess abdominal skin, loose stomach muscles, drooping, deflated breasts, and more. Dr. Chao is a highly experienced plastic surgeon who can combine several procedures to address the effects of pregnancy and breastfeeding. You might even find yourself enjoying your figure more than your pre-pregnancy body.

Explore Mommy Makeovers

Tummy Tuck

Tightening stomach muscles and removing loose, excess skin can give you a slimmer profile in your belly area. This surgery is very effective for patients who have lost massive amounts of weight, women wishing to regain their pre-pregnancy body, or anyone who wants a more toned-looking midsection.

Explore Tummy Tuck Surgery


Of all cosmetic surgery procedures, rhinoplasty is widely considered one of the most difficult due to the challenge of refining both cartilage and skin in a way that not only produces a natural-looking result, but also leaves little or no outward scarring. Dr. Chao is a board-certified plastic surgeon who excels at this procedure, and he can use it to address both cosmetic and functional needs, such as a deviated septum.

Explore Rhinoplasty


One area where plastic surgeons can make dramatic improvements and turn back the clock is the face. Dr. Chao can use various advanced facelift techniques to expertly tighten muscles, remove fat deposits, and smooth out deep lines and wrinkles to give you a fresher, rejuvenated appearance that is both natural-looking and aesthetically pleasing. 

Explore Facelifts

Start Planning the New You

Are you tired of feeling-self conscious about physical imperfections? Are you ready to start a new chapter of confidence and beauty in your life? Taking the first step is easier than you may think - and it's absolutely.

During your in-person or online consultation at Prime Plastic Surgery, we will listen carefully as you explain what you hope to achieve. Based on your goals, one of our surgeons can provide expert recommendations and explain your treatment options in a way that helps you make an informed decision. 

Feeling confident in your appearance can allow you to experience a better quality of life and greater success in your career and relationships. Why settle for anything less than the care of a board-certified leader in plastic surgery? To book your consultation with Dr. Chao, reach out to our La Mesa office in San Diego County online or call:

(858) 285-4667

More 5-Star Reviews "This is my second surgery with Dr Chao
and once again it exceeded all expectations."


Wendy Salyers

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This is my second surgery with Dr Chao and once again it exceeded all expectations. The professionalism and attention to detail with exactly what I wanted was delivered. I am so incredibly happy with every step of the process... 

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Lori Staumbaugh

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Dr. Chao and his staff were extremely professional and very helpful during a difficult time and emergency on a weekend night. We are grateful to him and his entire staff.

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Prime Plastic Surgery consists of the top board-certified surgeons in the country providing the highest caliber of patient care. We offer cosmetic and reconstructive procedures, both surgical and non-surgical, to help patients achieve truly life-changing results. Our surgeons are members of several prestigious organizations, including:

  • American Society of Plastic Surgeons
  • American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery
  • International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery
  • American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities

Discover what the Prime difference can do for you. Request a consultation online or call our practice at (858) 285-4667.

Contact Prime Plastic Surgery

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San Diego Office

8851 Center Dr
Ste 300
San Diego, CA 91942

Open Today 8:30am - 5:00pm

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9834 Genesee Ave
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La Jolla, CA 92037

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2670 Via de La Valle
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4645 Carmel Mountain Rd
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San Diego, CA 92130

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