In December, thought leaders from across the spectrum of aesthetic medicine assembled in Las Vegas for the fifth annual Cosmetic Surgery Forum. The 2013 Cosmetic Surgery Forum offered an array of expert viewpoints on many of the most pressing issues in cosmetic practice today. Included among the course offerings were 75 resident presentations, practice management pearls, and live demonstrations of several new and established therapies and devices.

According to course director Joel Schlessinger, MD, the diverse milieu of topics and perspectives is part of what makes Cosmetic Surgery Forum a significant event for physicians in the core aesthetic specialties.

“On the first day, we heard from 75 incredible residents and enjoyed the opportunity to hear Drs. Dore Gilbert, Michael Gold, and Doris Day discuss the incredible results that Syneron/Candela and their products provide,” noted Dr. Schlessinger. Another special event from the meeting was a two-person play by Steven Dayan, MD, co-chief editor of Modern Aesthetics®, and Valerie Monroe, the beauty editor for O Magazine, called “Subliminally Exposed.” Based on Dr. Dayan's best-selling book, the show offered an avenue into the evolutionary science of attraction and other “subliminal” details of perception and relationships. “Additionally, Neocutis sponsored another exchange on the first night, which set the tone for a weekend of fun and collegiality, all the while learning and exploring new topics in cosmetic surgery,” said Dr. Schlessinger.

Other highlights from the podium included a presentation by Erin Gilbert, MD, on the potential of neurotoxins for the treatment of psoriasis, a profile of microneedle resurfacing by Nancy Samolitis, MD, and a session in which Jeanine Downie MD weighed the benefits and subtle differences between fat melting technologies. Elsewhere in the realm of devices, Murad Alam, MD highlighted both the potential benefits and drawback of picosecond technology for tattoo removal. In addition, Dr. Alam observed that there is an increasing trend toward litigated cases in the area of laser medicine, even more so than other areas of aesthetics. The most common reason for litigation, according to Dr. Alam, is failure to acquire informed consent.

Under the moderation of Dr. Schlessinger, faculty presentations were followed by energetic, yet collegial dialogue, in which experts shared their own distinct experiences on topics ranging from injection techniques to post-treatment care. The conversational atmosphere is why attendee Jeffrey Parks, MD, a dermatologist who practices in Ormond Beach, Florida, considers Cosmetic Surgery Forum one of the finest meetings of its kind. “When I attend other meetings, I often don't feel like I'm getting anything fresh that I can use in my practice. When I come here, I leave with countless pearls,” said Dr. Parks. “This meeting makes me excited about what I do for a living and it helps me to be a better dermatologist.”