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A first in self-abuse.

Googling of the name Robert Ersek, M.D., FACS, reveals nothing that hints at the peculiar: The Austin, Tex.-based plastic surgeon is experienced at otoplasty and breast augmentation. But Dr. Ersek achieved a reputation makeover the day that he alerted the media, climbed onto an operating table at the Personique Clinic where he works, draped his legs, anesthetized his abdomen with local injection, and--with the cameras rolling--proceeded to slide a metal wand through an incision he had made in his abdomen and perform liposuction on himself. No word on how the print and television journalists at hand reacted when more than 250 cc of fat hit the collection bottle. The fat removed by liposuction is a rich source of stem cells that can be used to fight disease, Dr. Ersek claimed in an interview with USA Today. A means of tapping this rich alternative source of stem cells is not commercially available, however. The technology to isolate the stem cells in fat tissue is 5 years off, he said. But, with that future in mind, Dr. Ersek said that from now on he will advise his patients to save their liposuction-harvested fat. Indications leaves the final word to Dr. Ersek: "We're doing our part to keep Austin weird."

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Title Annotation:Indications
Author:Kubetin, Sally Koch
Publication:Family Practice News
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 1, 2004
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