Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Is Surgery Scientific?

Programme on BBC Radio 4 this evening exploring whether surgeons are scientific enough in their approach to surgery and new procedures.

The age old comparison to Sir Lancelot Sprat was made.

I don't have time for a longer post as just finishing writing my PhD thesis!
Listen again here.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Anatomy of the Upper Hand and Limb (Windsor Anatomy at King's)

This course has been postponed until 15th/16th October 2011.

Check out www.hand-clinic.co.uk for further information or contact Lindsey Waite (Assistant Course Organiser) on 01753 838431.



Image by Mr Donald Sammut.

The Face Trust

An article in the Evening Standard yesterday reported on the current state of assessing patients for a face transplant. Patients are ready and waiting but a suitable donor is yet to be found. The team is led by Prof. Butler who set up the The Face Trust to raise money for the research and surgical treatment in this field.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Life as a junior surgeon: Direct Red

The Friday Play on BBC Radio 4 was an abridged version of 'Direct Red: A Surgeon's Story'. A book written by London ENT surgeon Gabriel Weston and published in 2009.

I had not come across the book but I might just go and buy a copy after hearing the play. It was funny, poignant and brought back many memories of being a House Surgeon. Much of it was very familiar.

It is worth catching on Listen Again. Details of the book are below; it was published to critical acclaim. Gabriel Weston read English at Edinburgh before deciding on a career in medicine.


Weston G. Direct Red: A Surgeon's Story. Jonathan Cape; 2009.
ISBN-13: 978-0224084390

Saturday, 5 March 2011

RCS Surgical Workforce Report 2010

The Royal College of Surgeons of England has published their first comprehensive survey of the surgical workforce in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The survey was sent to all consultant surgeons on the RCS(Eng) database. They had a 60% response, which is not bad for a survey, but is far from definitive.

According to their records there are 334 consultant plastic surgeons in the UK. Plastic surgery does well on the number of female surgeons (44, 13.1%) compared to other specialties. It comes second highest after paediatric surgery but still disappointingly low.

The 334 consultants hold NHS appointments but there are many more plastics surgeons out there. My Freedom of Information request to the GMC showed that there are currently over 700 surgeons on the GMC specialty register with plastic surgery as their primary qualification.

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Skin: A Natural History

I picked-up this book when I went to the Skin exhibition at the Wellcome Collection last year. It promised a different perspective on skin, well beyond its anatomical and physiological properties so familiar to plastic surgeons.

The Nature review said "Tells us everything we might want to know about skin". It is certainly covers a wide range of topics yet remains a slim volume (179 pages before the extensive references). Core anatomy and physiology is covered for a lay audience and offers little for a surgeon.

However, the book is catalogued under 'anthropology / evolution'. Placing skin in this context is the book's purpose and it is done very successfully.

There is an extensive reference and note section at the back. It is available in hardback, softcover and eBook.


PSP Rating 4/5

N.G. Jablonski. Skin: A Natural History. University of California Press; 2006
ISBN-13: 978-0520242814