Aesthetic Plastic Surgery Society Hits 40 Year Milestone

New York, NY (April 19, 2007) - The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, long considered the nation's most prestigious organization of board-certified plastic surgeons specializing in cosmetic surgery, will celebrate its 40th Anniversary at the Javits Convention Center in New York City April 19-24, 2007.

Back in 1967, when John Lewis, MD, a plastic surgeon in Atlanta, GA, and Simon Fredericks, MD, from Houston, TX, planned the organizations first meeting, cosmetic surgery was viewed very differently than it is today, both by the public and other physicians, commented James Stuzin, MD, president of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. Cosmetic surgery was not considered serious medicine. Its practice was limited to a handful of surgeons who were very proprietary about their surgical techniques. And compounding the problem, cosmetic surgery was not taught during surgical residencies, so young surgeons had nowhere to learn new techniques. Early on the Aesthetic Society was one of the few venues where aspiring cosmetic surgeons could discuss and learn about their art in an open forum. This meeting is proof that one idea can change a specialty, says Dr. Stuzin.

As cosmetic surgery grew in demand and legitimacy, the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery grew accordingly. By the late 1970s, cosmetic surgery was receiving buzz in journals outside of the aesthetic surgery circles. This is in no small part due to the leadership of one of the founding Society members Thomas Baker, MD, a plastic surgeon in Miami, FL, who gave credibility to a specialty with major and unwarranted image issues.

The first meeting of The Society of Aesthetic Surgeons was held on Sunday, October 27, 1968 in the Toulouse-Dauphine room of the Royal Orleans Hotel. The name was later changed to the AMERICAN Society FOR Aesthetic Plastic SURGERY because the purpose of the organization is to enhance the profession, not the individual practitioners, and the word Aesthetic was selected because the word cosmetic used to give the connotation of cover up and temporary. The meeting was opened with an explanation of their purpose to promote the study and exchange of ideas in the field of cosmetic surgery, and followed by the first election of officers.

I remember our first meeting was a far cry from what we have today, said Dr. Baker. Back in 1968, 18 men gathered in a hotel room in New Orleans for a couple of hours. Forty years later, over 2000 men and women from more than 30 different countries will spend six days at the Javits Convention Center in New York City learning about the about new plastic surgery techniques and procedures.

As cosmetic surgery continues to evolve with the emergence of new talents and technologies, the ASAPS Meeting will change right alongside it, providing doctors with a venue to showcase the hard-earned respect aesthetic plastic surgery has amassed over the past 40 years.


The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), is recognized as the world's leading organization devoted entirely to aesthetic plastic surgery and cosmetic medicine of the face and body. ASAPS is comprised of over 2,600 Plastic Surgeons; Active Members are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (USA) or by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and have extensive training in the complete spectrum of surgical and nonsurgical aesthetic procedures. International Active Members are certified by equivalent boards of their respective countries. All members worldwide adhere to a strict Code of Ethics and must meet stringent membership requirements.


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