Definition of Surgery, plastic

Reviewed on 3/29/2021

Surgery, plastic: The field of surgery concerned with reducing scarring or disfigurement that may occur as a result of accidents, birth defects, or treatment for diseases, such as skin cancers when removal of same results in disfigurement.

Many plastic surgeons also perform cosmetic surgery that is unrelated to medical conditions, such as rhinoplasty to change the shape of the nose.; face lift; breast reduction or augmentation; body contouring.

Plastic surgery was developed as a field of medicine by Harold Delf Gillies (1882-1960). In 1918 he became the first physician to specialize in plastic surgery. Born in New Zealand, Gillies studied and stayed in England. At the beginning of World War II he was one of only 4 qualified plastic surgeons in England.


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