More than 4500 board-certified plastic surgeons from across the world congregated in San Diego for the American Society of Plastic Surgeons’ 82nd annual meeting October 10 through October 15 at the San Diego Convention Center.
The annual meeting began with a session on jaw reconstruction Thursday and ended Tuesday afternoon with a “Myth Busters” discussion of such controversial topics as complication rates and gluteal implants.
The event not only included presentations of everyday procedures like breast augmentation and face lifts but also sessions on pediatric facial fractures and “The Role of the Plastic Surgeon in the Treatment of Excessive Sweating.”
Monday’s session offered the “Iron Surgeon 2013” competition, presenting difficult cosmetic and reconstructive surgery cases to three master plastic surgeons who then must quickly recommend their solutions to a panel of judges in front of an audience of their plastic surgeon peers.
During Friday night’s charity event, Grammy-winning singer Sheryl Crow headlined a sold-out private concert on the USS Midway to benefit San Diego-based non-profit Fresh Start Surgical Gifts, which provides free plastic and reconstructive surgery to children in need across the world.
The organization also flew in three of their patients who had overcome serious injuries with the help of reconstructive surgery. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons awarded a woman in Denver whose left leg was amputated after being dragged under a limousine for 40 feet, a New York woman who underwent over 30 procedures to correct a cleft lip and palate deformity and a man in Alabama who seriously injured his right leg during a 2011 tornado.
The society’s president elect Dr. Scot Glasberg claimed that the most satisfying part of the conference is recognizing patients and their surgeons for overcoming their injuries.
“There is usually not a dry eye in the house when we do that,” Glasberg told UT San Diego. “It is one of the most moving things we’ve ever done.”
He commented that he focused on the newest techniques and technology headed for plastic surgery practices. The popular topic at the year’s conference was fat grafting, in which fatty tissue is taken from areas like the abdomen or thighs. Surgeons are increasingly using this technique for facial rejuvenation as well as breast augmentation and reconstruction.
“I get patients all the time who come into my office and say, ‘Can’t you just put some fat there?’” Glasberg told UT San Diego. “There is the harvesting of the fat, the processing of the fat and the implementation of the fat. Each has its own critical areas that get focused on in terms on innovation. There are tons of new innovations on how to do each of those processes.”