Texas Children's Hospital's division of plastic surgery welcomes three new team members

HOUSTON - Nov. 5, 2012 - Texas Children's Hospital's division of pediatric plastic surgery announced three new members of its team: cranio-maxillofacial surgeons Dr. David Khechoyan and Dr. Laura Monson, as well as craniofacial orthodontist Dr. John Wirthlin. The expansion of the team makes Texas Children's one of the largest full-time pediatric plastic surgery teams in the nation.

Dr. David Khechoyan

Khechoyan received his medical degree from the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle where he then went on to complete a six-year residency in plastic and reconstructive surgery. Khenchoyan acquired advanced qualification and sub-specialized training during a one-year, dedicated fellowship in pediatric cranio-maxillofacial surgery at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. His clinical interests include all aspects of cleft lip and palate care, craniosynostosis, craniofacial microsomia and pediatric facial trauma. His research interests involve critical examination and novel 3-D imaging analysis methods of surgical outcomes in craniosynostosis surgery.

Dr. Laura Monson

Monson received her medical degree from Wayne State University School of Medicine in Detroit, MI. She completed her plastic surgery residency at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor where she received the Mary Ann Tinker Award for a dedicated year as the craniofacial laboratory research fellow. She completed her pediatric plastic and craniofacial fellowship at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh and received additional training in the treatment of craniosynostosis, orthognathic surgery, vascular anomalies and comprehensive cleft care. Her clinical interests include craniosynostis, comprehensive cleft care, vascular anomalies and ear reconstruction. Her research focus is on improving clinical outcomes in the cleft lip and palate population.

Dr. John Wirthlin

Board-certified in orthodontics, Wirthlin received an undergraduate degree from Brigham Young University and earned his dental degree from The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. After completing his orthodontic residency at The University of Texas Dental Branch at Houston, he pursued his fellowship in craniofacial orthodontics at the New York University Langone Medical Center. His clinical interests include pre-surgical infant orthodontics, craniofacial growth patterns of patients with cleft lip and palate, distraction osteogenesis and combined orthodontic and orthognathic treatment planning. Some of Wirthlin's professional society and organization memberships include the American Dental Association, American Association of Orthodontics and American Cleft Palate - Craniofacial Association.

The plastic surgery division at Texas Children's Hospital offers comprehensive services that transform the lives of patients with complex surgical needs in a family-centered care environment. The team utilizes a multidisciplinary approach to combat the unique challenges presented by certain conditions that require plastic surgery. In addition to plastic surgery, the multidisciplinary care team involves expertise from specialist in fields of speech and language pathology, neurosurgery, otolaryngology, craniofacial orthodontics, medical genetics, audiology, nursing and nutrition.

Together, the team cares for thousands of patients each year who require specialized medical and surgical treatment for a diverse set of congenital and acquired craniofacial anomalies. The team offers sub-specialized, multi-disciplinary and individualized care of all aspects of cleft lip and palate, orthognathic surgery, craniosynostosis, craniofacial microsomia, facial clefts, resonance disorders and pediatric facial trauma. In addition, the team offers special expertise in the treatment of congenital nevi, vascular anomalies and general pediatric plastic surgery.

About Texas Children’s Hospital

Texas Children’s Hospital, a not-for-profit health care organization, is committed to creating a healthier future for children and women throughout the global community by leading in patient care, education and research. Consistently ranked as the best children’s hospital in Texas, and among the top in the nation, Texas Children’s has garnered widespread recognition for its expertise and breakthroughs in pediatric and women’s health. The hospital includes the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute; the Feigin Center for pediatric research; Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women, a comprehensive obstetrics/gynecology facility focusing on high-risk births; Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus, a community hospital in suburban West Houston; and Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands, a second community hospital planned to open in 2017. The organization also created the nation’s first HMO for children, has the largest pediatric primary care network in the country and a global health program that’s channeling care to children and women all over the world. Texas Children’s Hospital is affiliated with Baylor College of Medicine. For more information, go to www.texaschildrens.org. Get the latest news by visiting the online newsroom and Twitter at twitter.com/texaschildrens.