Robert Kotler, MD, a cosmetic surgeon in Beverly Hills, recently published a well-done overview of the ASPS meeting of a few weeks back. I have looked high and low for other physicians to report on the meeting from the "inside looking out" — that is, eschewing the non-professional's or journalist's point of view in favor of what a physician thought of the event. Overview of the Recent American Society of Plastic Surgeons' Annual Meeting:

My friends reported good attendance although there is concern by plastic surgeons regarding the difficulties of a slow economy. Practices that are primarily elective cosmetic plastic surgery, particularly in some areas of the country, are suffering greatly. And for those practices that are still heavily engaged in reconstructive plastic surgery, which relies on health insurance payments, there is the uncertainty of how the new health care legislation, being bandied about in Congress, will effect practitioners.

Apropos of the concerns of reconstructive plastic surgeons, it is important that the public be reminded that plastic surgery has both reconstructive and cosmetic surgery arms.

There were awards given to patients who underwent reconstructive plastic surgery and "triumphed over adversity". An Iraqi citizen injured in the war there, a breast reconstructive patient, a patient with port-wine stain, as well as a patient with a difficult skin cancer on the nose were identified and their stories told.

The Society's underlying message is that plastic surgery is not exclusively about beautification, celebrities, and high-profile public figures. Every day, plastic surgeons are in the trenches performing necessary repairs wrought by injury, accidents, cancer, and birth deformities.

It is very important that plastic surgeons continue to have training in these areas to help relieve misery and suffering.

There were a variety of subjects discussed that will be of interest to the public. 

Kotler goes on to describe a few of the "hot topics" unveiled at the meeting. And don't miss the response from Michael C. Pickart, MD, FACS, at the end of the blog entry.

Read it all here.