Plastic Surgery Is A Problem Solving Speciality

Stephen J Mathes, a great Plastic Surgeon has very aptly said that ‘Plastic surgery is a problem solving specialty’.  It is a special surgical discipline, in which every patient presents with a challenging problem requiring a unique solution. This problem may be a result of a congenital abnormality, an accident, a disease, or the aging process. The solutions are rarely based on any fixed protocols and often vary widely as each procedure performed is tailored to the specific requirements of the individual patient.
Plastic surgery is also unique in that there are no anatomic barriers to our involvement in care of the patient. Plastic surgery requires manipulation of skin, soft tissue, and bone from head to toe. With broad training in the surgical sciences and a tradition of innovation in problem solving, the plastic surgeon may be consulted by both the patients and medical colleagues for all types of congenital and acquired deformities regardless of location, aetiology and severity.

The techniques used for correction of the multitude of problems encountered by the Plastic surgeons are constantly evolving. From a historical perspective, the plastic surgeon has been characterized as an innovator who is willing and ready to embrace new ideas. Sushruta, the first Plastic Surgeon was a great inventor and he introduced concepts which we still follow even today. One unique thing about Plastic surgeons which distinguishes them from all the other medical specialties is the fact that it’s not just a skill or science based subject, but there is a significant portion of art also involved. It is this quality which distinguishes an artist from a technician…

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