We thank Dr. Pacella for his comments on our recently published article in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. A financial analysis is generally difficult to execute, particularly because “costs” may be overinflated. With help of the Duke Clinical Research Institute, we provided a strictly descriptive financial analysis, which indicates that reimbursements for the management of facial trauma are significantly lower compared with the general plastic surgery and orthopedic surgery patient population. We do not feel that managing facial trauma will ultimately lead to a long-term economic benefit for institutions. However, trauma care will remain a significant component of the plastic surgery mission, specifically in academic centers.
Detlev Erdmann, M.D., Ph.D., M.H.Sc.
Division of Plastic, Reconstructive, Maxillofacial and Oral Surgery
Duke University Medical Center
Durham, N.C. 27710
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