The Plastic Surgery Foundation
Log In Donate Now

Current International Scholars

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) / The Plastic Surgery Foundation's (The PSF) International Scholar Program and the Scholar Program of the American Society of Maxillofacial Surgeons (ASMS) enables plastic surgeons from abroad to study at host plastic surgery institutions in the United States for three to six months.

Edwin Moringo Mrema, MBChB, MMED-Surgery

Tanzania | Achauer Scholar

  • Breast Reconstruction
  • Abdominoplasty
  • Local and Regional Flaps (Head & Neck, Trunks, Extremities)
  • Hand Surgery
  • Body Contouring

It is a great honor and great learning opportunity to be selected for PSF International Scholar Program for the year 2021.Am a surgeon working at Muhimbili National Hospital, which is a tertiary facility in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Tanzania has a population of over 55 million inhabitants with very few formal qualified Plastic and Reconstructive surgeons, the demand of safe and quality reconstructive surgery is immense, and this has motivated me to desire more formal training on this field.

The Hospital receives a huge number of both cancer and traumatic patients with multiple defects to hands, head and neck, trunks, and extremities of which many go unattended due to lack of expertise particularly in Breast Reconstruction, Flap Surgery and Hand surgery.

Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) together with Rafiki Surgical Mission and Muhimbili National Hospital in collaboration with other visiting Plastic Surgeons (Reconstructive Women International) have launched a master's course in Plastic and reconstructive surgery which started in November 2019.

Due to lack of qualified Plastic and reconstructive surgery teaching staff at the University, am intending to join the teaching staff soon after completion of PSF International Scholar program training. The knowledge and skills acquired from PSF International Scholar program will be reciprocated back home to Muhimbili National Hospital and the entire country.

The skills acquired will be transferred to my fellow surgeons and surgical residents and other members in the department through in-house training, and consequently it will benefit our fellow countrymen who are in great need of Plastic and Reconstructive surgery services.

Claudia Albornoz, MD, MSc

Chile | PSF Scholar

  • Breast Reconstruction
  • Microsurgery - Head and Neck
  • Breast Aesthetic Surgery
  • Quality of Life and PRO Research
  • Transgender Surgery

As an Assistant Professor of the University of Chile, I am very proud to have been able to start a breast reconstruction program in my Institution. However, there are some reconstructive needs that we are not currently meeting: Transgender Surgery and Lymphedema. The International Scholar Program will help me to get knowledge about these two specific areas.

I believe that as a University Hospital of the main University in Chile we have a social responsibility with our patients but also, we need to be able to train the next generations of Plastic Surgeons. As in the rest of the world, gender reassignment is a growing reconstructive area and we are currently not able to offer it to our patients. I would also like to develop Lymphedema surgery. Since one of my main interests is reconstruction after breast cancer, I can improve my patients' quality of life with a state-of-the-art breast reconstruction, but I am not able to offer lymphedema treatment. Both areas are in early stages of development in Chile.

I am very honored to have been selected as an International Scholar, I strongly believe it can make a difference for my patients but also for the training of the next generation of Chilean Plastic Surgeons.

Mohamad Rachadian Ramadan, MD

Indonesia | PSF Scholar

  • Reconstructive Microsurgery
  • Vascularized Composite Allotransplantation
  • Autologous Breast Reconstruction
  • Orthoplastic Surgery
  • Breast Reconstruction
  • Spinoplastic Surgery

After fellowship training, I joined as the Young Consultant in Reconstructive Microsurgery Section, Division of Plastic Surgery, Dr. Ciptomangunkusumo National Hospital, Faculty of Medicine Universitas Indonesia. The last two years were remarkable for our microsurgery team, consisting of 3 faculties. The total numbers of free flaps were doubled, with surgery duration two times faster. This accounted for the newly added faculties who make free flap surgery as teamwork, increasing the flap success rate by 96% this year. All of these leads to the newly developed fellowship program in reconstructive microsurgery.

We are now developing a long list of patients who suffer from severely disfiguring facial defects due to massive tumours presented late to our hospital. With this kind of defect, conventional microsurgical reconstruction would never satisfy the patient or the surgeon. Thus, we feel like it's the time to learn from the USA how to commence face transplantation or even limb transplantation program. In our hospital, the biggest and National Referral Hospital for all Indonesian territory, vascularized tissue transplantation is regularly done by our Urologic and Digestive-Biliary surgery colleagues. We believe that this International Scholar Program would serve as a great platform of education for Us to learn from vascularized composite allograft expert from the USA. We hope we could start our first face or extremity transplant by upgrading our skills and knowledge within five years. All this effort is new hope for us, for our patient that requires such treatments. We will always strive to provide a life worth living for all our patients.

During this International Scholar Program, I would like to learn and develop the first Indonesian protocol for face and limb and transplantation program. This includes observing the animal laboratory phase, patient selection and donor selection, the rehearsal in cadaver, and the surgery phase if I am lucky enough to extend my visit to several transplant centers. Hence, I have a comprehensive view and comparison of how vascularised composite transplantation is done in different centers.

The objective of my project is to adopt the transplant protocol from the center I mentioned above. While I am there, I can discuss the protocol's application to our center in Indonesia and ask their advice, with potential limitations and challenges that may arise. This would be the first step for us Indonesian to develop our transplant protocols. Hopefully, my visit will also create an active collaboration to invite an expert from those center above to Indonesia to nurture our first transplant.

Yordan P. Yordanov, MD, PhD, FEBOPRAS

Bulgaria | PSF Scholar

  • Head and Neck / Facial Aesthetic and Reconstructive Surgery
  • Breast Aesthetic and Reconstructive Surgery and BIA-ALCL
  • General Reconstructive Surgery
  • Lymphedema Supermicrosurgery

As a Medicine Doctor and a plastic surgeon, I have always been eager to work and specialize in environments with high professional standards keeping my professional development continuous. During all my trainings and practice at home and abroad I have always looked for opportunities to learn from the best getting involved in teams where patient safety goes first.

As the ASPS is one of the most prestigious societies of plastic surgeons worldwide and considering the impressive continuing medical education that it offers, I am entirely convinced that becoming a recipient of the International Scholar Program for 2021/2022 of the Plastic Surgery Foundation is the next important key step in my career. Moreover, it will contribute a lot to my daily efforts to further increase the quality of medical care in plastic aesthetic and reconstructive surgery in Bulgaria. I do believe that this complex process should be based on constantly improving solid knowledge, practical skills and personal behavior – something that I always try to transmit to my juniors and colleagues. Above all this, the networking with US plastic surgeons will be beneficial in terms of any future plans for collaboration.

ASPS/PSF, thank you all for the great honor and privilege to serve as a 2021 International Scholar!

Mohammed H. El Fahar, MD, PhD, EBOPRAS

Egypt | PSF Scholar

  • Head and Neck Reconstruction
  • Breast Surgery and Reconstruction
  • Lymphedema and Supermicrosurgery
  • Facial Aesthetics and Body Contouring
  • Congenital Hand Surgery

I feel very enchanted to be selected as an International Scholar. I am a full-time associate professor in the plastic and reconstructive surgery department, Mansoura University – Egypt.

My university hospital is a tertiary center that serves millions of people in the north part of Egypt.

Passionately, I enjoy my work in reconstructive surgery. It helps a far-reaching scope of people and makes them able to restore their life especially after devastating burns or tragic accidents.

My interests are reconstructive microsurgery, hand surgery, and facial aesthetic reconstruction.

I think this scholarship would provide me with enormous experience in those fields. My strong interest in applying for this program has grown out of this personal ambition to become a good surgeon and scientist. I love detailed work; I insist on putting maximal effort into the fulfillment of a task. I consider this program as enrichment, to broaden my knowledge in reconstructive and aesthetic surgery, and to build a professional network within the USA.

As a staff member, who always wants to step forward in a dynamic learning environment that will stone the future of my career. I am looking forward to sharing knowledge with other (international) scientists and physicians; this is a strong motivation for me to keep improving continuously and explore themultidisciplinary field of plastic surgery. While I am constantly focusing on my work and academic career, I am always searching for opportunities to level up my knowledge frequently, I remain grateful to find opportunities like the one your foundation is providing to overseas scholars.

I am looking to be involved in conjoined research work or expanding it in multicenter studies that will add more evidence to the scientific research that I am entitled to it as part of the progression of my academic carrier. Some resources and lab studies that are not available in my working place in my hometown on the same degrees that are available of some American institutions, that is why this scholarship could be influential part to continue what I have already started.

The second biggest career goal that I want to accomplish, is to establish a nonprofit organization where I can create internships for young plastic surgeons to share in the humanitarian campaigns that target rural African communities and provide free medical services. Also, I want to provide safe practice education in conjunction with all of that. This will help and contribute to the surgeon's development to avoid malpractice.

Finally, I am very grateful to the Plastic Surgery Foundation (PSF) to be accepted for the 2021 scholar program hoping to improve and propagate that experience so I can serve people back home. Also, it will eventually help and boost my future as an academic person who is responsible for teaching and training others to be good plastic surgeons.

Tarush Gupta, M Ch, DNB, MS

India | PEER Scholar

  • Cleft and Craniofacial Surgery
  • Rhinoplasty
  • Breast reconstruction
  • Facial aesthetic and reconstruction surgery

I want to thank the ASPS/PEER foundation selection committee for having bestowed this honor upon me. Under the auspices of ASPS, the International Scholar Program will enable me to visit multiple centers in the United States and learn the novel techniques directly from the field leaders. An exposure to cleft rhinoplasty and cleft care would help me pick up the finer nuances of the sub-specialty, which would translate into better patient care in our institute. Rhinoplasty and facial aesthetic and reconstruction surgery have their creative aspect to them and have always intrigued me.

The knowledge and skills acquired during the stay will be further shared with my colleagues. This exposure will also help in imparting more comprehensive training to Plastic Surgery residents at our department.