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American Board of Plastic Surgery

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While seeing patients today in my Louisville, KY Plastic Surgery office, I received the newletter from the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

On the cover was a photo of the Chairman of the Board, Dr. Michael Sadove. Also  newly elected to the Board was Dr. Robert Havlik. Both of these accomplished surgeons and national leaders trained me during my Plastic Surgery residency!

In addition, our Department Chairman, Dr. Jack Coleman is Past Chair of the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

Congratulations  to my former teachers, Drs. Sadove and Havlik!

Lee Corbett, MD

Plastic Surgery is a very diverse field.

Most are familiar with the Cosmetic Surgery component. In Louisville Cosmetic Surgery is very popular. There are reality shows all over cable and articles about the topic in almost every woman’s magazine. But Plastic Surgeons do a lot of other things too.

Children: Plastic Surgeons deal with a number of issues involving kids. We are the ones who repair cleft lips and palates and skull malformations. We also treat birthmarks.

Burns: Plastic Surgeons typically man most Burn Units in conjunction with General Surgeons and Critical Care experts.

Hand: About half of all hand surgeons are Plastic Surgeons, the other half are Orthopedic Surgeons. We treat traumatic and congenital hand problems.

Head and Neck: Plastic Surgeons treat trauma and cancer affecting the head and neck.

Soft Tissue Loss: We are also experts at treating significant soft tissue deficits. Usually this is breast reconstruction following cancer, but we also reconstruct defects that occur all over the body that result from Trauma or Cancer.

Plastic Surgery is a huge field. Most Plastic Surgeons will narrow the scope of their practice simply because it is impossible to do it all.

Lee Corbett, MD

A hematoma is collection of blood that can form after surgery. It usually results when a vessel starts to leak blood after your surgery has been completed.

Hematomas are not very common, less than 1% in most surgeries and a bit higher with facial surgery. But, they are always a risk whether you are having a Breast Aug, Facelift, or Tummy Tuck. In fact, a hematoma can occur after almost any surgery. If they occur, unfortunately, a second surgery will usually be required to drain the blood.

When the occur it is almost always within the first 24 hours after surgery. During this time period, at about the 6-8 hour point, your body actually starts to release proteins that break down blood clots to keep you from clotting too much. When this happens, the clot on the end of a tiny blood vessel that was not bleeding during surgery can dissolve and bleeding ensues. This can lead to a hematoma.

The good news is that in the vast majority of cases, the diagnosis is made quickly, treatment rendered, and in the end your surgical result and health are in good stead!

Lee Corbett, MD

All posts on this blog are presented by Louisville Plastic Surgeon Dr. Lee Corbett.

This is a pretty good question. A lot of people think as Plastic Surgeons we use plastic in our operations. Now we do use a lot of prosthetics like chin implants, cheek implants, titanium plates and screws, breast implants and many more. Thing is, none of these are made of plastic.

The specialty got it’s name from the etymology of the word Plastic.

The first known defintion of the word dates back to 1632,  and it meant “capable of shaping or molding,” from the latin word plasticus, and from the Greek word plastikos “able to be molded, pertaining to molding,” from plastos “molded,” from plassein “to mold” (see plasma). The Surgical sense of “remedying a deficiency of structure” is first recorded 1839.

I thought this was a good nerdly bit of Plastic Surgery trivia you might enjoy.

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are presented by Louisville, KY Cosmetic Surgery expert, Dr. Lee Corbett

Good question. As a Louisville Plastic Surgeon I am so used to seeing all of them that I mistakenly assume everyone else does too. I figured out most people don’t a few years ago. A patient asked me if I was Board Certified. I was and told her so. Then I asked her if she knew what that even meant. She didn’t, she had just been told to make sure she asked that question.

So here are the explanations of what you might see in a Plastic Surgeons office.

M.D.: This person is a medical doctor.

FACS: This means your surgeon is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. In order to be a Fellow you have to be Board Certified in a surgical field and be in good standing within your respective society. You can link to their website by clicking here.

ASPS: This stands for American Society of Plastic Surgeons. This is the mainstream society for most Plastic Surgeons. In order to be a member you must complete a proper Plastic Surgeon residency. At that point you are a Candidate Member. Once the Plastic Surgeon passes his Boards (see my blog on Board Certification), he or she can become an Active Member of the ASPS. You can link to their website by clicking here.

ASAPS: This is the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons. This is a subset of the ASPS. The members of this society must be Board Certified Plastic Surgeons whose practices are heavily devoted to cosmetic surgery. You can link to their website by clicking here.

Any society with the words “cosmetic surgery” in its’ title is going to be made up primarily of Dermatologists but can include physicians from any training background who practice cosmetic medicine.

Hopefully this gives you a better understanding of what all those framed diplomas on your surgeons wall mean. If you see one you don’t recognize, ask!

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are authored by Dr. Lee Corbett who has practiced cosmetic plastic surgery in Louisville, KY for 11 years.

A Rhinoplasty, typically known as a “nose job”, is an operation intended to change the shape/apperance of your nose. The procedure is done in an OR and almost always requires a deep sedation if not a general anesthetic. It is not typically a very long operation, usually lasting less than an hour. Afterward, most patients go home but some do stay.

So what are we doing when we ‘do’ a nose. Well, the most common manuevers involve taking down a hump on the back of the nose, straightening a crooked nose, or working on the tip of the nose to make it smaller, less round, less pointy etc…the goals very from person to person.

The nose is made up of two things: bone and cartilage. The upper most part of your nose is bone. Pinch between your eyes and you can feel the hard bone. As you move your fingers down the nose gets softer, that is the transition to cartilage.

Noses can be operated on by either an ‘open’ or ‘closed’ technique. Open surgeries involve a small incision on the columella, thats the fleshy part just above your upper lip that seperates your nostrils and the rest of the incision is inside the nostrils. Open procefures are usually done when tip work is being done. Closed surgeries use incisions that are only on the inside of the nostrils and unseen. We use this approach most often to address a hump or a crooked nose. A rhinoplasty will rarely change the way you breathe.

Breathing difficulties are usually the result of problems with your septum, the caritalge that divides your nose into a right and left side, or your turbinates which are in the nose on the sides. These two parts are not always affected with a rhinoplasty.

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are authored by Louisville rhinoplasty surgeon Dr. Lee Corbett. Dr. Corbett specializes in cosmetic plastic surgery including facelifts, browlifts, blepharoplasy, Botox, Juvederm, Restylane, breast augmentation, breast lifts, breast reductions, body lifts, liposuction,  and tummy tucks.

There are typically going to be about 5 or 6 folks in the OR when you first get into the room.

There are either one or two anesthesia folks. Typically there is an anesthesiologist, he or she is an MD who is there when you go to sleep and wake up, and a CRNA, who is a nurse anesthetist. This person is an RN who did two years of intense training to become a CRNA. The CRNA will be with you the entire case and make sure you are adequately cared for during your surgery. In some centers there is all MD anesthesia but this is rare. CRNA’s do over 95% of my cases and they do a very nice job and give flawless care!

Next, there will be a circulating nurse. He or she will be in scrubs with a cap and mask. This person is a R.N. who has a lot of jobs. They will help you move onto the OR bed, get you warm covers and pillows, put a seat belt on you, and once we get started this person moves around the OR and gets any equipment, suture etc… that I need to do your surgery.

The person in the OR gown is your scrub nurse. This person is either a tech or a nurse who hands me the instruments I use during your surgery. Before your surgery starts, this person pulls all of the equipment we will need for your procedure.

Finally, you’ll see Yours Truly. At this point, they’ll be giving you the “happy juice” through your IV so you may not remember me being there, but I promise I am.

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are authored by Dr. Lee Corbett. Dr. Corbett practices cosmetic plastic surgery in Louisville, Kentucky and Southern Indiana.

The real answer is you should really never get in a tan bed.  The science is pretty solid behind the fact that tanning beds can increase your risk for skin cancer. So you are reading this and thinking “Ok, I am tired of hearing that, now answer my question!”.

If you are considering Plastic Surgery, here’s your answer.

From a post surgery standpoint the response is based on skin color changes. When we make a surgical incision we are wounding the skin. In response to this wounding, the cells that produce pigment, our melanocytes, are prone to over-produce pigment. This is what makes the skin on either side of some incisions turn dark. Well, sun exposure obviously is another cause for melanocytes to rev up their production. That is why we tan. So, you have cells that already are in an ‘excited’ state, ready to pump out pigment and then you expose them to a second strong stimulus to produce pigment, and voila, you end up with a hyperpigmented scar.

I recommend that you wait at least 6 weeks before exposing any fresh incision to a tan bed. If you are dark complected, a person who always gets a great tan without ever burning,  I would wait a solid 3 months and the longer the better. But when in doubt, refer back to my opening statement.

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are authored by Louisville, KY plastic surgeon Lee Corbett, MD.