Editors:   Mimis N. Cohen MD, and Seth R. Thaller MD
Publisher: Thieme – 1383 pages, with 3267 illustrations
Book Review by: Nano Khilnani

In this current – 2018 – edition of the book – plastic surgery has come a long way and outcomes have improved tremendously since the first edition of this book was published 46 years ago in 1972, followed by a second edition in 1984 and a third one n 2001

In the 1970s, Dr. Mimis Cohen points out, the reporting of unexpected outcomes and complications were frowned upon due to pride, saving face, and avoiding litigation. After the third edition, Dr. Cohen and his then co-editor Dr. Robert M. Goldwyn had planned on working on a fourth edition that would have seriously addressed the problem of unfavorable results after plastic surgery, but Dr. Goldwyn passed away. Dr. Cohen initially hesitated on taking on such a project all by himself, but eventually did.

So here it is – a two-volume work of almost 1,400 pages with two editors and 10 associate editors. In a search for books on Amazon’s website for “complications in plastic surgery” we found numerous books. But just changing the search slightly and typing in “avoidable problems in plastic surgery” we found just four books with the word ‘problems’ or ‘problem’ in the book titles, but none with the word ‘avoidable’.

So this book does fill a need for anyone looking to avoid problems in many types of plastic surgery, as described below. This is a two-volume work with its nine sections listed below. Within the sections are 70 chapters, too numerous to list here. Over the decades, plastic surgery has become highly specialized, as the demand has grown for ‘fixing’ certain parts of the human anatomy besides facial features.

In this highly valuable and detailed book, you will find more than 3,200 full-color illustrations with accompanying text on not only face-related such tasks as alloplastic implants, auricular reconstruction, blepharoplasty, chemical peels, dermal fillers, facial rejuvenation and resurfacing, fat grafting, forehead lift, lip reconstruction, neck rejuvenation, rhinoplasty and much more relating to the face.

You will also find many chapters on plastic surgery on the abdomen, breast, buttocks, chest, torso, arms and legs and their parts hands, fingers, legs, and feet.

Volume One

  1. Section 1 – Introduction
  2. Section II – Legal and Safety Issues
  3. Section III – General Problems
  4. Section IV – Aesthetic Surgery
  5. Section V – The Breast

Volume Two

  1. Section VI – Pediatric and Craniofacial Surgery
  2. Section VII – Reconstructive Surgery for the Head and Neck, Body, and Lower Extremity
  3. Section VIII – The Head and Upper Extremity
  4. Section IX – Burns

Two hundred and twenty specialists (including two editors and ten associate editors) working in various aspects of plastic, reconstructive, and cosmetic surgery have authored or coauthored the chapters of this two-volume work. They are from all over the United States and 10 other countries – Australia, Canada, Egypt, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Spain. Taiwan, and the United Kingdom.

Let’s take a look inside the contents of chapter 37– Gynecomastia on page 623 of Section V – The Breast. Gynecomasyia is defined as an excessive development of mammary tissue in the male breast. Sometimes these male breasts are as large as breasts in females.

Most of the time such male breasts are not malignant, but the authors of this chapter Dennis C. Hammond and Kuylhee Kim point out to a study that revealed that male breast cancer does occur and account for about one percent of all breast cancers, particularly in patients found to have Klinefeller’s syndrome

This chapter is dedicated to surgical treatment of gynecomastia. The outline of this chapter consists of discussions on the main topics and their subtopics that we list below. We do not list the sub-subtopics below them so that this review does not become too long.


  1. Avoiding Unfavorable Results and Complications in Gynecomastia
    1. Preoperative Planning and Patient Selection
    2. Intraoperative Decisions
    3. Postoperative Complications
    4. Conclusion
    5. References
  2. Managing Unfavorable Results and Complications in Gynecomastia
    1. Assymetry
    2. Incomplete Volume Reduction
    3. Surface Irregularity
    4. Periareolar Scar Reduction
    5. Hematoma and Seroma
    6. Infection
    7. Conclusion
    8. References
  3. Discussion by Mordcai Blau and Ron Hazani
    1. Recurrence
    2. Skin Slough
    3. Insufficient Gland Excision
    4. Excessive Skin Scarring
    5. The Benelli Technique Applied to Gynecomastia Patients
    6. Loose Skin
    7. Rashes and Skin Sensitivity
    8. Postoperative “Puffy Areola”
    9. Bruising, Swelling, and Hematomas
  4. Understanding Dynamic and Static Depressions
    1. Dynamic Depressiom
    2. Static Depression
    3. Conclusion
    4. References

This chapter, like others in this excellent two-volume book is richly illustrated with full-color photos of different types of gynecomastia in various patients, with pre-surgical drawings and plans on surgical procedures This book is truly unique in the sense that it contains discussions on avoidance of unfavorable results in plastic surgery of various kinds.


Mimis N. Cohen MD, FACS, FAAP is Professor and Chief of the Division of Plastic, Reconstructive, and Cosmetic Surgery, and Director of the Craniofacial Center at the University of Illinois in Chicago, Illinois.
Seth R. Thaller MD, DMD, FACS is Professor and Chief Program Director in the Division of Plastic, Aesthetic and Reconstructive Surgery at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine in Miami, Florida.

Associate Editors:
David J. Birnbach, MD, MPH
Joshu Fosnot, MD
Lawrence J. Gottlieb, MD, FACS
David T. Nexcher, MD
Zub Jal Panthaki, B. Eng. (Hons Elec.), MD, CM, FACS
Pravin K. Patel, MD, FACS
Linda G. Phillips, MD
Joseph M. Serletti, MD
James M. Stuzin, MD
Peter J. Taub, MD, FACS, FAAP