William H. Huffaker, MD, FACS
Plastic surgeons need both creativity and attention to detail, qualities that define Dr. William H. Huffaker of St. Louis Cosmetic Surgery. With a career spanning 4 decades, his experience and avid interest in the dynamic changes of the industry have led Dr. Huffaker to becoming one of St. Louis' most prominent plastic surgeons.
"We constantly need to adapt to different situations," Dr. Huffaker says. "Our advancements in understanding the chemistry and physiology of the body have allowed us to treat patients better and more safely."
“Incredibly helpful and knew exactly what he was doing. I have referred several friends to Dr. Huffaker and I know they will be just as happy as I am!”
Education & Training
Dr. Huffaker is a board-certified plastic surgeon who earned his medical degree from the University of Kansas School of Medicine and completed an internship at the University of Alabama Medical Center. He served in the U.S. Army after his first year of general surgery residency at the University of Virginia.
After spending 2 years in the Army as an otolaryngologist, he returned to Virginia and served as chief resident during his final year as a surgical resident. Dr. Huffaker completed his plastic surgery residency at Washington University Barnes Hospital.
In His Own Words
What led you to pursue a career in plastic surgery?
Plastic surgery as a specialty appeals to my creative side. Every patient is a little different and requires a different approach. It is not unusual to see a challenging patient who seeks help after getting unsatisfactory results at another plastic surgery practice. Helping to correct those issues is very rewarding.
What traits define you as a plastic surgeon?
Besides creativity, I love the detail-oriented part of plastic surgery. That is a trait that is especially important in the operating room, where I am a stickler for safety and sterility.
Do you believe the pace of change in plastic surgery will continue?
I know it will. Change is part of medicine, and I always stress to our residents that they need as broad of an education as possible now because in the future they will be performing operations differently than when they finish their residencies.
What would an ideal patient review say about the experience at St. Louis Cosmetic Surgery?
It is a team effort at our practice. From their first phone call to our patient care coordinator, to their welcome by our receptionist and meeting our nurses and medical assistants, and finally their successful surgery by one of our plastic surgeons, we want their experience to be outstanding. We want patients to rave about all aspects of their care.
Describe a case that made a lasting impression.
Earlier in my career I performed a finger re-attachment on a carpenter who had tried to get treated at another practice, but was turned down. It was probably one of my most technically difficult re-attachments, but fortunately he did well and he was able to continue working as a carpenter.
Throughout his career, Dr. Huffaker has remained active in professional organizations. He served as president of the St. Louis Area Society of Plastic Surgeons, president of the Missouri Association of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons, president of the St. Louis Metropolitan Medical Society, and vice president of the Missouri State Medical Association.
In addition, Dr. Huffaker chaired the Department of Plastic Surgery at the West County Surgery Center from 1994 until its closure in 2006. He remains active in several national professional organizations, and he chaired the Judicial Council of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and served as chair of the Government Affairs Committee of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons®.
- American Society of Plastic Surgeons
- Chair of Government Affairs Committee (2007-09)
- Chair, PlastyPac (2009-present)
- American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery
- Fellow, American College of Surgeons
- American Medical Association
- Delegate to AMA House of Delegates
- Chair of the Surgical Caucus of the American Medical Association (2008-10)
- Lipoplasty Society of North America
- Missouri Association of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons, past president
- Missouri State Medical Association, past vice president
- St. Louis Metropolitan Medical Society, past president
- St. Louis Area Society of Plastic Surgeons, past president
- St. Louis Surgical Society
Dr. Huffaker is recognized for his efforts on Capitol Hill, which led to major legislative victories, including the removal of the Cosmetic Tax from the final healthcare reform legislation. He also participated in the 3rd Annual Joint Surgical Advocacy Conference (JSAC) in Washington.
Left to Right: Steven Bonawitz, MD, Anne Taylor, MD, Government Affairs Committee Chair, Malcolm Z. Roth, MD, ASPS Board Vice President, Health Policy and Advocacy, Michael McGuire, MD, ASPS President, Bob Basu, MD, Debra Johnson, MD, Robert Whitfield, MD, William Huffaker, MD, Chair, PlastyPAC.
During the American Medical Association's (AMA) Interim meeting in San Diego, California, Dr. Huffaker received the "Special Recognition Award" from the Surgical Caucus of the AMA. Dr. Huffaker received this award "for excellent dedication and service to the Surgical Caucus of the AMA as Chair from 2008-2010.
One Patient's Story
"My story is a very personal story that I am sure a lot of women can relate to. I had multiple C-section deliveries and over time felt less and less comfortable with my body. It got to the point where I would only undress in the dark and removed mirrors from my bedroom. After much deliberation I decided on a Tummy Tuck. I was referred to Dr Huffaker and was immediately comfortable with him. We spoke about me not just my body. He was interested in me as a person not just as a patient. I scheduled the Tummy Tuck and what a difference it made, not just in my body but in my mental state. It was one of the best decisions I ever made. I liked the way I looked again.
"A few years later, after a stressful period in my life, I decided to act upon a thought I always kept tucked away in the back of my mind. I decided to have breast augmentation surgery. I was always a small breasted woman and there was what I considered a significant difference in the size of my breasts, after years of nursing. Again, I went to Dr. Huffaker. I was very specific about what I wanted and he listened to me. I didn't want everyone to look at me after surgery and just see 'boobs' I wanted a very natural look and size. I remember the morning of my surgery I asked him if he remembered what I wanted and he said yes he had my pictures I referred to for my 'AFTER' look. He reassured me he knew what I wanted and would not let me down. HE GOT IT PERFECT!
"For once in my life I can honestly say I am comfortable with myself. For me, plastic surgery was the way to rebuild by self-esteem and confidence."