What is plastic surgery?

It is a popular misconception that the word plastic in plastic surgery means artificial. Actually, 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 portion of the anatomy, except the central nervous system. Portions of the body that can be improved by plastic surgery include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Skin (including skin cancer, scars, burns, birthmarks, tattoo removal, etc.)
  • Maxillofacial (the facial skeleton)
  • Congenital deformities (including deformed ears, abnormal breast development, cleft palate, cleft lip deformities, etc.)

For more information on the University of Maryland Rehabilitation & Orthopaedic Institute Plastic Surgery or to make an appointment, please call 410-328-2360.