It is with deep sorrow that we inform you of the passing of our dear colleague, Professor Miodrag R. Karapandzic. Born on April 25, 1930, in Prokuplje, Serbia, Professor Karapandzic (Fig. 1) is known for his original method for the reconstruction of upper and lower lip defects by local arterial flaps, later named after him as “Karapandzic’s lobe-technique.” He published this technique in the British Journal of Plastic Surgery in 1974, and perfected it in later years for different types and sizes of lower and upper lip defects. Karapandzic’s lobe-technique is described in Grabb’s Encyclopaedia of Flaps and was subsequently introduced into all eminent textbooks in the field of plastic and reconstructive surgery, used for the education of plastic surgeons worldwide.
Before his career in plastic and reconstructive surgery, Professor Karapandzic completed his maxillofacial surgery program in October of 1966 at the Faculty of Medicine in Belgrade, with the highest honors. He then sought professional training in plastic and reconstructive surgery in the United Kingdom and in world-renowned centers for postgraduate education in London, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Bristol, and Salisbury, from October of 1972 to May of 1973.
He returned to his alma mater to complete his specialist examination in plastic and reconstructive surgery, passing it with flying colors in April of 1976. He pursued professional training in the United States in the field of cosmetic surgery from February until May of 1980, and again from March to June of 1981.
Characterized by his commitment to and talent in reconstructive surgery, Professor Karapandzic earned the confidence of several renowned institutions in the field, and was often invited to offer lectures as a visiting professor. His sponsors included the American Academy of Plastic Surgery in May of 1979, for lectures in a postgraduate course in reconstructive surgery; the Science Committee of the American Medical Academy of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery in March of 1980, for a lecture series; the University of California in April of 1980, for lectures at a postgraduate seminar in different areas of reconstructive surgery; the British Medical Federation in 1981, for postgraduate teaching at the University of London; and the School of Pythagoras in Cambridge in September of 1982, for a course in lip reconstructive surgery. When Professor Karapandzic retired in October of 1995, he left as Full Professor of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, and as Director of the Clinic for Burns, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Clinical Center of Serbia.
Professor Karapandzic continuously improved operative techniques and conveyed his knowledge and experience to generations of surgeons, many of whom are now eminent specialists. He continued operating, and was fully engaged in his profession well into his eighties, thus proving he was born to be one of the greatest surgeons in his field. Professor Karapandzic will be greatly missed, but his legacy will live on for many years to come.