The Plastic Surgery Foundation
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Grants We Funded

Grant applicants for the 2023 cycle requested a total of nearly $4 million dollars. The PSF Study Section Subcommittees of Basic & Translational Research and Clinical Research evaluated nearly 140 grant applications on the following topics:

The PSF awarded research grants totaling over $1 million dollars to support nearly 30 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.

A Validated Assessment Tool for Microsurgical Skills

Principal Investigator
Reuben Bueno Jr., MD


Southern Illinois University

Funding Mechanism

Focus Area

Objective evaluation of surgical education and core competencies is rapidly gaining importance in residency training for numerous reasons: patient safety, reduced resident work hours, mandatory Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) requirements regarding skills lab training, and specialty-specific competencies. Although over 40 microsurgical models have been published, no consensus currently exists regarding the best method for skills assessment. With the increased national focus on objective evaluation within a surgical skills laboratory, it is important to provide plastic surgery training programs and residents with an assessment tool that accurately reflects trainees' progress and facilitates constructive feedback. Purpose: We propose to develop and publish an objective tool for evaluating microsurgical skills in a laboratory setting. This project represents a collaborative effort by members of the Association for Reconstructive Microsurgery to create a valid, reliable, and openly available assessment tool measuring microsurgical proficiency. Methods: We will finalize our evaluation form based on input from national microsurgery experts, ensuring face, construct, and content validity. Ten PGY 1-6 residents will be recorded performing a 1mm rat femoral artery anastomosis. Surgeries will be evaluated by 10 microsurgery experts using our assessment tool. Statistical analyses will include internal consistency, inter- and intra-rater variability, and reliability. Multivariant analysis of individual components will eliminate institutional bias and non-predictive elements while reducing redundancies. Significance: A robust assessment tool that accurately reflects microsurgical proficiency is a necessary response to national changes in surgical education. Once validated, we will make the tool freely available, creating an unprecedented opportunity for the inter-institutional conduct of multi-center surgical education studies.