Overview of Plastic Surgery

What is plastic surgery?

It is a popular misconception that the word plastic in plastic surgery means artificial. Rather, the word is derived from the ancient Greek word plastikos, which means "to mold or give form." Plastic surgery is a surgical specialty involved with the reconstruction of facial and body tissue defects due to illness, trauma, or birth disorders.

Plastic surgery restores and improves function, as well as appearance. It can involve surgery on any part of the anatomy, except the central nervous system, including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Skin (including skin cancer, scars, burns, birthmarks, and tattoo removal)
  • Maxillofacial (the facial skeleton)
  • Congenital anomalies (including deformed ears, cleft palate, and cleft lip)
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