The Plastic Surgery Foundation
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Grants We Funded

Grant applicants for the 2022 cycle requested a total of over $2.9 million dollars. The PSF Study Section subcommittees of Basic & Translational Research and Clinical Research evaluated 115 grant applications on the following topics:

The PSF awarded research grants totaling almost $550,000 to support 19 plastic surgery research proposals.

ASPS/PSF leadership is committed to continuing to provide high levels of investigator-initiated research support to ensure that plastic surgeons have the needed research resources to be pioneers and innovators in advancing the practice of medicine.

Research Abstracts

Search The PSF database to have easy access to full-text grant abstracts from past PSF-funded research projects 2003 to present. All abstracts are the work of the Principal Investigators and were retrieved from their PSF grant applications. Several different filters may be applied to locate abstracts specific to a particular focus area or PSF funding mechanism.

Psychosocial and Physical Functioning Following Body Contouring Surgery

Principal Investigator
David Sarwer PhD


University of Pennsylvania

Funding Mechanism
National Endowment

Focus Area

Persons with extreme obesity are often motivated to undergo bariatric surgery with the goal of improving their physical health. Many patients also anticipate that the significant weight loss associated with bariatric surgery will lead to improvements in their quality of life and, more specifically, their physical appearance and body image. A large body of research suggests that bariatric surgery frequently confers these physical and psychosocial benefits. An estimated 140,000 Americans underwent bariatric surgery in 2004. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 55,927 massive weight loss patients underwent plastic surgical procedures in the same year. Taken together, these numbers suggest that a sizable percentage of bariatric surgery patients subsequently elect to undergo body contouring procedures. To our knowledge, no study has comprehensively investigated the psychosocial and physical outcomes of body contouring surgery among massive weight loss patients. Furthermore, little is known about the factors that influence the decision to undergo plastic surgery. Some patients likely undertake these procedures to address body image dissatisfaction not resolved with the massive weight loss associated with bariatric surgery. Others may be motivated to lessen the physical problems associated with loose, sagging skin that often develops following significant weight loss. The proposed study will investigate changes in psychosocial and physical functioning in 100 individuals who present for body contouring surgery at one of four practices across the country. These individuals will be compared to changes in bariatric surgery patients who do not elect to undergo body contouring surgery. The study also will investigate which pre- and post-bariatric surgery variables are most strongly associated with undergoing body contouring surgery. The study is innovative, as it will provide new information on the psychosocial and physical changes experienced by the substantial number of patients who elect to undergo plastic surgery following bariatric surgery.