Credentials: Recognized Medical Specialty Boards

Note: Since 1934, medical specialty boards have been officially approved by action of the American Board of Medical Specialties and the American Medical Association Council on Medical Education.


Year Founded
Year Approved
Allergy & Immunology 1971 1972
Anesthesiology 1938 1941
Colon & Rectal Surgery 1935 1941
Dermatology 1932 ----
Emergency Medicine 1976 1979
Family Practice 1969 1969
(General) Surgery 1937 1937
Internal Medicine 1936 1936
Medical Genetics 1980 1991
Neurological Surgery 1940 1940
Nuclear Medicine 1971 1971
Obstetrics & Gynecology 1930 ----
Ophthalmology 1917 ----
Orthopedic Surgery 1934 1935
Otolaryngology 1924 ----
Pathology 1936 1936
Pediatrics 1933 1933
Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation 1947 1947
Plastic Surgery 1937 1941
Preventive Medicine 1948 1949
Psychiatry & Neurology 1934 1935
Radiology 1934 1935
Thoracic Surgery 1950 1970
Urology 1935 1935

NOTE: There is no recognized medical specialty board specifically for "cosmetic" surgery. The plastic surgery specialty encompasses both reconstructive and cosmetic surgery.

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 non-surgical 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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