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Division of Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery


Hand surgery, then Mount Everest

Kim Hess with Dr. Mickey Gordon

Kim Hess recently got the chance to thank Dr. Gordon for performing the surgery that enabled her to return to climbing and tackle Mount Everest. You can watch the video on ABC-7, the Denver Channel.

Sometimes a patient’s goals for hand surgery are as simple as being able to perform everyday tasks that the rest of us take for granted, such as tying shoes or driving a car. Other times, the goals are more ambitious.

Kim Hess, a 28-year-old woman from Steamboat Springs, came to Dr. Gordon in 2013 with a badly broken hand. When she told him what she hoped to achieve after surgery, he realized he had met a patient who gave the phrase “high goals” new meaning.

Hess’s aspiration was to climb the highest mountain peak on each of the world’s seven continents. Impressively, she had already conquered four of the mountains on that list. However, on her way down from the summit of the fourth, Mount Denali in Alaska, she had an accident that resulted in three broken bones in her hand and arm.

Given the severity of Hess’s injuries, Dr. Gordon warned her that it could be a long road back to resuming normal two-handed activities, never mind climbing mountains again. But Hess was determined to reach her lifetime goal. Next on her list: Mount Everest, the world’s highest peak, more than twice as high as the tallest mountain in her native Colorado.

(March 2017)


Dr. Deleyiannis serves patients, shares knowledge in Latin America

Dr. Fred Delyiannis in Cuba

Dr. Deleyiannis shares information on cleft-lip/cleft-palate surgeries with a group of Cuban physicians.

Dr. Fred Deleyiannis was a busy traveler in the first two months of 2016, with medical trips to two developing countries in Latin America.

On the first trip (January 23-30), Dr. Deleyiannis co-led, with Dr. Stig Somme, a group of physicians who traveled to Guatemala City to share expertise and provide free medical care. At the Moore Pediatric Surgery Center, the team performed more than 60 procedures on patients ranging in age from 3 months to 18 years. This was Dr. Deleyiannis' 14th trip to Guatemala, where he serves on an annual basis. You can read more on the Guatemala trip on the Children's Hospital Colorado website.

On the second trip (February 3-7), Dr. Deleyiannis was part of medical team from University of Colorado Hospital that made a historic first visit to Cuba since normalization of U.S.-Cuban relations. You can read more on the Cuba trip in CU Anschutz today.

(February 2016)


Plastic Surgery Division kickstarts regional society

Devil's Thumb Ranch

Devil's Thumb Ranch will be the location of the first annual meeting of the Mountain West Society of Plastic Surgeons.

Our Division has spearheaded the formation of a new regional organization, the Mountain West Society of Plastic Surgeons (MWSPS). The MWSPS will include plastic surgeons and plastic surgery programs in Arizona, Colorado, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming.

The mission of this regional society is to promote research and support education in the field of plastic surgery and foster the development of plastic surgery in the western region of the United States.

The four institutions with plastic surgery training programs in the region (Mayo Scottsdale, University of Colorado, University of Nevada, and University of Utah) have all committed to support this new society and to participate in an annual meeting. The University of Colorado will provide the CME credit for the meeting.

The first annual meeting will be held from March 3rd to March 6th, 2016, at Devil's Thumb Ranch in Tabernash, Colorado. The meeting will provide a vehicle for scientific interchange and for networking of surgeons, residents, nurses, researchers, and guests who are involved in plastic surgery.

(December 2015)


Dr. Mathes appointed PSF Visiting Professor

Dr. Peter Rubin, Chair of Plastic Surgery at the University of Pittsburg (center), recognizes visiting professors Peter C. Johnson, MD (left) and David Mathes, MD (right).

Dr. David Mathes has been named a Visiting Professor for the coming year by The Plastic Surgery Foundation, a national organization dedicated to fostering innovation and improving the quality of life of plastic surgery patients through research and development, charitable care, and enhanced public-awareness campaigns.

During the 2015-2016 academic year, Dr. Mathes will visit the following universities to share his expertise:

  • St. Louis University
  • University of Utah
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • University of Chicago

Visit the PSF website for details on Dr. Mathes' lecture topics, as well as information on all eight of the 2015-2016 PSF Visiting Professors.

(June 2015)


Dr. Mathes publishes book chapter

Book Cover: The Science of Reconstructive Transplantation

Congratulations to Dr. Mathes on his recent publication in The Science of Reconstructive Transplantation (Springer, 2015).

Dr. Mathes co-authored a chapter with Dr. Bruce Swearingen and Dr. Jeff Chang of the University of Washington, Seattle.

More information is available on the publisher's website: see The Science of Reconstructive Transplantation.

(June 2015)


More stories

For more news stories, visit the Department of Surgery's News Archive. To see only stories from the Plastic and Reconstructive Division, follow this link.