Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery

PAs in Plastic and Reconstructive surgery work in a variety of settings that encompass cosmetic surgery, burn management and reconstruction of both congenital and trauma related injuries. In particular, the PA in the cosmetics subspecialty will often have to deal with celebrities and other individuals who require heightened attention to confidentiality. Many plastic surgeons look for PAs with experience in a variety of surgical specialties as these skills frequently come into play within the scope of the practice.

Since many plastic surgeons practice in office-based operating rooms and "surgi-centers", the PA must be current in BCLS and ACLS and be comfortable with management of cardiac and respiratory emergencies.

Surgical PAs use the full breadth of PA training – from basic primary-care assessments to advanced intra-operative techniques – making Plastic and Reconstructive surgery a rewarding and fascinating specialty.

Job Qualifications

Highly technical and demanding skills are mastered through years of physician assistant practice, master degree and post-graduate critical care residency.

Operating Room Duties & Responsibilities

  • Performs first assistant duties
  • Has excellent suture skills – equal to that of the surgeon
  • Has expert knowledge of anatomy
  • Knows the latest surgical techniques
  • Contributes intelligent input into the surgical procedure
  • Performs inventory of all necessary plastic surgical supplies and prostheses

Hospital Duties & Responsibilities

  • Writes orders in Recovery Room, ICU and floor
  • Follows patients and writes daily progress notes
  • Maintains clear communication with the attending surgeon and any consultants regarding patient status, both pre and post discharge.

Office Duties & Responsibilities

  • Understands reimbursement issues
  • Understands patient insurance plans and communicates with insurance companies in writing
  • Attends at least one plastic surgical CME offering per year
  • Maintains skills of the Primary Care PA
  • Consults with product and pharmaceutical representatives
  • Performs wound checks, suture and drain removals
  • Performs minor surgical procedures without in-room supervision
  • Performs consultations in the surgeon’s absence
  • Takes call
  • Dictates operative and discharge summaries