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Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Short Articles: How Do They Impact Our Practice?

Oranges, Carlo M. M.D.; Gohritz, Andreas M.D.; Schaefer, Dirk J. M.D.

Author Information
Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery: November 2016 - Volume 138 - Issue 5 - p 954e-955e
doi: 10.1097/PRS.0000000000002658

Sir:

“The use of tissue from the buttocks to augment the breast is a time-honored procedure. In the following case the breast repays its debt to the buttocks.”1 With these words, Bartels et al. introduced the first report on gluteal augmentation in the medical literature, published in the Journal in 1969. (See Document, Supplemental Digital Content 1, which shows the first historical report on gluteal augmentation by Bartels et al.,1 published in the November of 1969 issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, http://links.lww.com/PRS/B903.) To perform their pioneering intervention, they described an unusual use of Cronin prosthesis, thus justifying the initial statement mentioned above. Four years later, in 1973, the Journal published the second case of gluteal augmentation, described by Cocke and Ricketson to correct underdeveloped hips in a young woman with the placement of a “pancake” silicone implant specifically designed for this purpose. (See Document, Supplemental Digital Content 2, which shows the second historical report on gluteal augmentation by Cocke and Ricketson,2 published in the July of 1973 issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, http://links.lww.com/PRS/B904.)

Since then, several generations of plastic surgeons followed, modified, and enhanced the ideas initially exposed in these two fundamental articles, both of which, very interestingly, appeared in a very short form (one single page each), respectively, as a case report and an ideas and innovations article.

Several considerations can be made in this regard. First, these two articles powerfully demonstrate the consistent long-lasting leading role of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery in the 70th anniversary of its foundation, with regard to an increasingly popular intervention, central to every debate on cosmetic surgery updates.3

Second, and in our opinion most important, it has to be noted that even a few words published in the Journal hold the amazing power to engender tremendous changes in the history of plastic surgery. Indeed, we believe that the two reports mentioned above represent the ideal exemplification of the extreme relevance of the past and current sections of the Journal dedicated to short articles.

How important they are was thoughtfully outlined by the Editor-in-Chief in his Editorial on letters and viewpoints.4 Dr. Rohrich emphasized the great popularity of these parts of the Journal, where a clear and concise exposition is required to maximize readability and user friendliness.4 These works also represent a fantastic tool to establish a connection with our daily practice and experience, so relevant in our discipline. We should remember the terrific role of the articles by Bartels et al. and Cocke and Ricketson while reading and writing these brief contributions.

Finally, brevity and simplicity of style have been praised as the best way to convey rational and scientific thought since the most ancient times. “Rem tene, verba sequentur” (grasp the subject, and the words will follow) was the motto of the Ancient Roman senator and historian Cato the Censor (234 to 149 bc), used to emphasize the primacy of the thought over the words needed to express it, thus favoring conciseness and clarity, and avoiding rhetorical embellishments that may deflect from the truth.

DISCLOSURE

The authors have no financial interest to declare in relation to the content of this article.

Carlo M. Oranges, M.D.
Andreas Gohritz, M.D.
Dirk J. Schaefer, M.D.
Department of Plastic, Reconstructive, Aesthetic, and
Hand Surgery
Basel University Hospital
Basel, Switzerland

REFERENCES

1. Bartels RJ, O’Malley JE, Douglas WM, Wilson RG. An unusual use of the Cronin breast prosthesis: Case report. Plast Reconstr Surg. 1969;44:500.
2. Cocke WM, Ricketson G. Gluteal augmentation. Plast Reconstr Surg. 1973;52:93.
3. American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. Labiaplasty and buttock augmentation show marked increase in popularity. 2014 Available at: http://www.surgery.org/media/news-releases/labiaplasty-and-buttock-augmentation-show-marked-increase-in-popularity. Accessed April 8, 2016.
4. Rohrich RJ. Improving letters and viewpoints. Plast Reconstr Surg. 2005;115:1201.

GUIDELINES

Viewpoints, pertaining to issues of general interest, are welcome, even if they are not related to items previously published. Viewpoints may present unique techniques, brief technology updates, technical notes, and so on. Viewpoints will be published on a space-available basis because they are typically less timesensitive than Letters and other types of articles. Please note the following criteria:

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