Roy Hong, M.D.
One patient in particular sticks with him. "She was an attractive woman, but the pre-operative pictures just made you think that this was a miserable human being," he recalls.
Dr. Hong removed a facial mole and scheduled a follow-up visit. "When she came in to see me a week later, she was a transformed person," he says. "To figure out what is bothering the patient and to be able to fix it is a very nice thing."
Along with the satisfaction he obtains from working closely with his patients, Dr. Hong enjoys being part of a team of other top cosmetic surgeons. "I feel very fortunate that we have such a wonderful group of people in my partners," he says. "It is nice to be able to speak with your partners and bounce ideas off them."
Dr. Hong says that his experience often helps his younger partners in assessing new surgical techniques and identifying the best candidates for specific procedures.
"The technical part of surgery is not the hard part. It is getting people through the whole process of the surgery, and that is where the experience of 20 years of practice is helpful," he says. "Once you operate on somebody, you are partners for life."
Dr. Hong's primary surgical interests include cosmetic and reconstructive surgery of the face and breast. He is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, and is a member of the clinical faculty at Stanford University.
He is a graduate of Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. He received his plastic surgery training at the Institute of Reconstructive Plastic Surgery at New York University, and his aesthetic surgery training at Manhattan Eye and Ear Hospital in New York City.
In addition to this training, Dr. Hong completed a surgical research fellowship at Harvard University Medical School's Brigham and Women's Hospital and a fellowship in microvascular surgery at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.
Dr. Hong was born in Korea and moved to the United States when he was six. He speaks Korean and has worked as a medical volunteer in South Korea, as well as a visiting plastic surgeon in Vietnam.
He joined the Palo Alto Medical Foundation in 1997 and enjoys collaborating with PAMF doctors in other specialties, including working with the PAMF Cancer Care team to help breast cancer patients.
For Dr. Roy Hong, practicing cosmetic surgery is about more than achieving great results. It is about helping people be happier.
The importance of happiness was a lesson he absorbed early on in his career. He learned it from his own medical school experience when he took a year off to volunteer at a rural hospital in South Korea – and he learned it from his patients.