Plastic Surgery

Clinical Environment

Residents are provided training at three acute care teaching hospitals, each offering unique training experiences. Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital, a level one trauma center, is the main teaching hospital where such rotations as trauma, burn, hand surgery, and pediatric plastic surgery are completed. An extensive experience with facial fractures occurs at this training site, where our residents provide exclusive coverage for facial trauma, as there are no other competing subspecialty training programs in the city such as OMFS or ENT. Also, because of the significant number of acute hand injuries coming through the Emergency Department, our residents become competent in evaluating and treating these injuries at an early stage in their training.

Spectrum Health Blodgett Hospital serves as a training site for breast reconstruction, general plastic surgery, and reconstructive surgical cases.

Mercy Health Saint Mary’s is a hospital that serves the underserved and inner-city population. Rotations in breast surgery, hand surgery, microsurgery, and general plastic surgery or reconstructive surgery are completed at this campus. The operative and office experience is varied and extensive, balancing resident autonomy with award winning teaching faculty.

Residents also rotate at three accredited office-based private surgical centers that provide ambulatory and cosmetic surgery training. This valuable experience teaches residents the business of plastic surgery, thus preparing them to better handle the economic challenges that all plastic surgeons encounter. Residents also operate at three other free-standing ambulatory surgical centers that are associated with hospital systems. These sites provide experience in fast-paced hand surgery cases, cosmetic surgery, and breast surgery.

Program Focus

Plastic Surgery Integrated Curriculum (13 4-week blocks)


  • Plastic Surgery – 2 blocks – 1 block
  • PS/Hand Surgery – 1 block
  • Trauma – 1 block
  • Surgical Critical Care – 1 block
  • Anesthesia – 1 block
  • Emergency Medicine – 1 block
  • Surgical Oncology – 1 block
  • Orthopaedic Surgery/Trauma – 1 block
  • General Surgery – 4 blocks


  • Plastic Surgery – 2 blocks
  • PS/Hand Surgery – 1 block
  • Pediatric Plastic Surgery – 1 block
  • Plastic Surgery/Research – 1 block
  • Burn – 2 blocks
  • Breast Surgery – 1 block
  • Trauma – 1 block
  • Surgical Critical Care – 2 blocks
  • General Surgery – 2 blocks


  • Plastic Surgery – 3 blocks
  • Hand Surgery – 2 blocks
  • Pediatric Plastic Surgery – 1 block
  • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery – 1 block
  • Oculoplastics – 1 block
  • Surgical Dermatology – 1 block
  • Pediatric Surgery – 1 block
  • Vascular Surgery – 1 block
  • Transplant – 1 block
  • General Surgery – 2 blocks


  • Core/Cosmetic Plastic Surgery – 4 blocks
  • Hand Surgery – 4 blocks
  • Peds Plastic Surgery – 2 blocks
  • Breast Surgery – 2 blocks
  • Plastic Surgery/Research – 1 block


  • Core/Cosmetic Plastic Surgery – 8 blocks
  • Hand Surgery – 3 blocks
  • Breast Surgery – 2 blocks


  • Advanced Core/Cosmetic Plastic Surgery – 7 blocks
  • Advanced Peds Plastic Surgery – 1 block
  • Advanced Hand Surgery – 2 blocks
  • Advanced Breast Surgery – 2 blocks
  • Elective


Didactics average five hours per week of protected time for high quality educational curriculum and include:

  • Weekly basic science covering Selected Readings in Plastic Surgery, Grabb & Smith, Neligan’s Plastic Surgery, as well as Flaps and Syndromes
  • Weekly faculty teaching conferences, oral board review format
  • Weekly hand surgery conferences with chapter review of Trumble Principles of Hand Surgery and Therapy, and Green’s Operative Hand Surgery
  • Weekly plastic surgery grand rounds; follows a 3-year curriculum and includes monthly morbidity & mortality review
  • Weekly faculty-directed walk rounds
  • Monthly Journal Club graciously hosted in faculty homes or offices, includes critical appraisal of current plastic surgery literature through an evidence-based medicine approach, as well as interesting case review


The GME Research Department has developed several tools and resources that will help Spectrum Health residents and fellows develop ideas into manageable and realistic research projects. We have found that using these resources saves time and energy while avoiding typical pitfalls and dead ends. For example, the research project outline facilitates the translation of a good idea into a research project, provides the bulk of the narrative portion of IRB application, and serves as the guide for implementing the project. This collaborative effort has proven beneficial as all residents have recently graduated with multiple journal article publications

To access more details, including templates (e.g., study protocol, poster), help request forms and other contact information, visit Spectrum Health GME Research.

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All applications are accepted through ERAS. Please see the For Applicants section of your preferred program for additional details.

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