Overview and objectives of the Plastic Surgery curriculum
- The specialty of plastic and reconstructive surgery is that branch of surgery concerned with the restoration of normal form and function. It is a varied specialty involving adults and children and encompassing a wide range of conditions affecting different parts of the body.
- Nowadays most consultants in the UK have a particular area of special interest within plastic surgery although nearly all also take part in an on-call rota dealing with emergency admissions.
- One of the most interesting and fulfilling aspects of the specialty is the frequency with which plastic surgeons work with surgeons from other specialties such as general surgery, trauma and orthopaedic surgery, otolaryngology, and oral and maxillofacial surgery. In these cases the reconstructive techniques that plastic surgeons have at their disposal are particularly useful.
- The specialty is also closely associated with aesthetic surgery where body parts are surgically altered to bring about an improvement in appearance.
Areas of special interest associated with the specialty of plastic surgery include the following:
- Academic Plastic Surgery
- Aesthetic Surgery
- Cleft Lip and Palate Surgery
- Complex wound
- Craniofacial surgery
- Ear reconstruction
- Genitourinary reconstruction
- Head and Neck Surgical Oncology
- Hand and Upper Limb Surgery
- Lower limb trauma
- Oncoplastic Breast Surgery
- Pelvic reconstruction
- Skin and soft tissue tumour surgery (incl. sarcoma)
- Vascular anomalies
Implicit in the wide-ranging nature of the specialty is the requirement that a consultant in plastic surgery demonstrates a high level of skill, experience and judgement in carrying out all the roles that his/her job entails. The curriculum and training programmes are designed to produce surgeons competent to take up such consultant appointments in the UK. To be considered fully trained, surgeons must achieve all the requirements of the curriculum through to successful completion.
Simon Wood - Chairman of the SAC for Plastic Surgery
Vivien Lees - SAC Curriculum Editor for Plastic Surgery