Six residents and five medical students in the Division of Plastic Surgery in the Department of Surgery took home some top prizes for their presentations at the Texas Society of Plastic Surgeons (TSPS) Annual Meeting Sept. 14-16 in San Antonio.

Among the winners were residents Dr. Alyson Melin, who won first place for her clinical paper examining outcomes following craniosynostosis repair, and Dr. Eric Maiorino, who took second place for his clinical paper looking at a new method of fixing adult facial fractures. The team also won its first ever Blocker Bowl and the Truman G. Blocker Jr. Award, which is given to the highest scoring plastic surgery residency program in the state at the annual meeting.

Matthew Greives, M.D., assistant professor of pediatric plastic surgery, said the success at the TSPS Annual Meeting is an indication of how the program is growing “by leaps and bounds” both clinically and academically. At six residents and five medical students, this is the largest group to attend the meeting. All six residents had to exhibit research projects of their own, judged by their scientific merit, clinical interest, and overall presentation. Their scores are averaged and compared to other residency programs at the meeting.

“I think we were surprised and very excited, not only for [Melin] and [Maiorino], but for McGovern Medical School’s program to be recognized as the best residency in the state,” Greives said.

Melin said it was an honor to have the Division Plastic Surgery recognized and said she was proud to be a member of the team.

“These teams work tirelessly to help children with craniosynostosis and the project which won best clinical paper is a critical look at our experience with these patients,” Melin said. “The UT division of plastic surgery winning this award was certainly the highlight of the meeting and showcases all the hard work and commitment of our students, residents, and faculty.”

Maiorino said he was proud of the direction of the ongoing research at McGovern Medical School.

“The clinical implications of the research we presented may lead to better outcomes and improved satisfaction for our patients,” Maiorino said. “Being recognized personally and as a team simply exemplifies everyone’s hard work and dedication.”

On returning next year, Greives said he is very excited to go back and defend the title.

“I’m really happy for our residents,” Greives said.