Portrait of Dr. Hamra by Holt Haynsworth

Photography by Holt Haynsworth

Sam T. Hamra, MD, FACS

Dr. Sam T. Hamra
Experience and Qualifications

Dr. Hamra has been a pioneer all his professional life. Upon entering private practice, he was introduced to the original SMAS technique developed by Professor Tord Skoog of Sweden. In 1973, he and his associate, Dr. Mark Lemmon, were the first Americans to adopt this technique. Their award-winning work was first published in 1980.

Dr. Hamra was the first to introduce the inclusion of cheek fat (malar fat) to the facelift, which was published as the "Deep Plane Facelift" in 1990. He was the first to include the orbicularis muscle of the lower eyelid in the Deep Plane Facelift, which became the "Composite Facelift."

Now performed worldwide by numerous surgeons, Dr. Hamra is credited with originating the arcus marginalis release and septal reset procedures. These techniques preserve eyelid fat and use it to cover the orbital bone and smooth the transition from eyelid to cheek.

Dr. Hamra further modified and refined the Composite Facelift to its present state several years ago. His published description of the "hollow eye and lateral sweep" is the first article in the medical literature to define these facelift problems and to instruct surgeons on how they can be corrected.

Dr. Hamra maintains a thriving practice in Dallas, but finds time to publish, teach and lecture worldwide.

Board Certifications

American Board of Surgery 1970
American Board of Plastic Surgery 1977

Dr. Hamra is a Diplomate of the American Board of Plastic Surgery. The ABPS is the only plastic surgery organization recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), the umbrella agency for more than 20 specialty-accrediting boards. Please visit their website if you have any questions about their certifications.

The American Society for
Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS)

Dr. Hamra is a member of the ASAPS. Membership in The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) means a surgeon is ABPS-certified and has met additional requirements for continuing education and experience in cosmetic surgery. Please visit their website if you have any questions about their programs and membership requirements. You can view Dr. Hamra's ASAPS profile here.

asps logo300

American Society of Plastic Surgeons

Dr. Hamra is a member of the ASPS. ASPS members are specifically trained in cosmetic and reconstructive procedures of all types, The ASPS website at provides an extensive collection of educational resources for consumers as well as physicians. You can view Dr. Hamra's ASPS profile here.

American Association of Plastic Surgeons (AAPS)

Dr. Hamra is also a member of the AAPS, an association dedicated to the advancement of the science and art of plastic surgery through surgical education, research, scientific presentations, and professional interaction.

The philosophy behind The Facelift Letdown

Dr. Hamra writes in his book, The Facelift Letdown, "Having been in practice since 1973, I have had experience with almost every type of facelift procedure. I have made almost every mistake and I have had almost every complication. For this reason at this stage in my career, I feel that it is a service to patients to attempt to explain what can happen, why it happens, and what can be done to repair these problems."

According to Dr. Hamra, facelift letdown is certainly not the fault of the surgeon. Rather, it is the shortcomings of traditional procedures that have been practiced for many years and which have remained by and large unchanged. This is in spite of new and exciting advances which can produce very attractive and enduring results.

In 1998 Dr. Hamra published two articles in The Journal of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. The first was on new innovations for the Composite Facelift. The second was entitled "Frequent Facelift Sequelae: Hollow Eyes and the Lateral Sweep, Cause and Repair."

To Dr. Hamra's knowledge, this was the first article describing the shortcomings of conventional facelifts, and how to correct them. It was not met at first with enthusiasm by every plastic surgeon, but then it was not the first time Dr. Hamra had received criticism from his peers. New techniques can upset the apple cart in all medical specialties.

According to Dr. Hamra, it brings to mind a saying from Oklahoma, where he grew up; "The pioneers get the arrows and the settlers get the land." In fact, after early doubts, many surgeons started to incorporate his new techniques into their practices.

Education -
The short biography

Dr. Hamra was born and raised in Oklahoma and completed undergraduate studies, medical school, and general surgery training at the University of Oklahoma. He completed his plastic surgery training at the Institute of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at New York University Medical Center.

He is board certified by the American Board of Surgery and the American Boardof Plastic Surgery, and is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, and the American Association of Plastic Surgeons.

Dr. Hamra also serves as Clinical Professor in the Department of Plastic Surgery at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, has published widely in the plastic surgery literature, and lectures extensively worldwide.

The details -
Curriculum Vitae

Place of Birth:   Ponca City, Oklahoma

Office Address:   CBS Radio Building
4131 N. Central Expressway
Suite 950
Dallas, Tx. 75204

Training:   Resident in Plastic Surgery,
    Institute of Reconstructive Plastic Surgery
    New York University Medical Center 1970-73
Residency, University of Oklahoma 1966-68
    (General Surgery)
Residency, University of Oklahoma 1964-65
Fellowship, University of Lausanne, Switzerland, 1965-66
Internship, University of Oklahoma 1963-64
University of Oklahoma, 1959-1963, M.D. 1963
University of Oklahoma, 1955-1959, B.A. 1959

Board Certifications:   American Board of Plastic Surgery 1977
American Board of Surgery 1970

Societies:   American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons
American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery
American Association of Plastic Surgeons

University Affiliations:   Clinical Professor
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas

Adjunct Associate Professor
Division of Plastic Surgery, Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery
Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas