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Self-Audit in Plastic Surgery: Toward Total Quality Management of Personal Professional Practice

Alhoqail, Rola Abdullah FRCS(Ed), FRCS(Gl), CABS

Journal of Craniofacial Surgery: March 2011 - Volume 22 - Issue 2 - p 409-414
doi: 10.1097/SCS.0b013e318207434b
Original Articles

Researchers did not describe before the process of self-audit as proposed in this research. A new concept of total quality management of personal professional practice (TQM-PPP) is introduced. A prospective audit of a personal professional practice, clinical and academic, for the first 7 years as a consultant plastic surgeon is described. The number of patients reported was 248; 145 (59.4%) were male patients and 99 (40.6%) were female patients, of whom 159 (65.2%) and 85 (34.8%) were Saudis and non-Saudis, respectively. Sources of admission were mainly emergency (118, 47.8%) and outpatient departments (115, 46.6%). Operations were performed in 177 (72%) of patients; the author was the actual surgeon in 155 (62.5%) of patients, which were classified as intermediate (48.3%), major (38.4%), minor (12.6%), and major complex (0.7%). Operations were elective in 109 patients (61.6%), and the rest were emergencies. Clinicopathologic typing was mostly traumatic in 108 patients (59%), followed by aesthetic in 42 patients (23.0%). The region most operated on was the upper limb and then the head and neck; 89 (70.6%) of operations were done in 2 hours. Six complications were detected. Significant relations observed between clinicopathologic typing and age groups, nationality, and sex. However, no significant difference was detected between adults and pediatric age groups or between elective and emergency cases with respect to total hospital stay. There was no significant difference in the mean length of stay in relation to age groups. Various academic achievements in the same period and the pyramid of TQM-PPP are included. In conclusion, it was a satisfying experience, and I encourage other colleagues to do the same. Identifying the zone of practice of the individual consultant/health professional, designing audit tools for each, and accurate record keeping; using specific staff for data collection, entry, and analysis; and developing outcome evaluation techniques from patients and health care providers are the tools to achieve TQM-PPP.

From the University of Dammam, Saudi Arabia.

Received April 6, 2010.

Accepted for publication April 25, 2010.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Rola Abdullah Alhoqail, FRCS(Ed), FRCS(Gl), CABS, PO Box 116, Al Khobar 31952, Saudi Arabia; E-mail:

The author reports no conflicts of interest.

© 2011 Mutaz B. Habal, MD