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Family physicians increasingly are incorporating nonsurgical aesthetic procedures into their practices. Referring family physicians must be sufficiently knowledgeable about plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures to answer patient questions, guide their expectations, and refer them to the appropriate subspecialist.

In this edition, Section One covers botulinum toxin injections and dermal fillers. Section Two provides an overview of facial plastic surgery procedures. Section Three discusses liposuction and body contouring, and Section Four addresses breast augmentation and reconstruction, buttock augmentation, and calf augmentation.

As we all struggle to cope with changes caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it may seem incongruous to read about plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures, particularly since the performing of elective procedures has been paused in most facilities. You may be surprised to learn that this topic was chosen by our editorial board in fall 2018, and that creation of an edition of FP Essentials typically takes approximately 2 years from the initial topic selection to publication. Our editorial board tries to determine which topics will be most useful and interesting for our readers, but predicting the future is never easy!

Looking back, I am impressed that in January 2019 we published an edition on infectious diseases that included a section on community response to emerging infectious diseases. In his foreword to that edition, my colleague Barry Weiss, MD, wrote, “Although concerns about Ebola have faded, it is only a matter of time before some other infection—perhaps a lethal influenza outbreak—brings the issue back to our attention.” Also, in December 2019, we published a Disaster Medicine edition that you may find useful. Please visit the American Academy of Family Physicians website for these and other pandemic resources.

When you have finished studying this edition and are ready to submit your posttest answers, please take a moment to tell us what you found to be the most useful and what we can do to improve. We look forward to your feedback and ideas for topics you would like covered in future editions.

Karl T. Rew, MD, Associate Medical Editor
Associate Professor, Departments of Family Medicine and Urology
University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor

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