David Teplica, MD

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Listed in Chicago

  • 803 West Hutchinson Street, Chicago, IL 60613
  • (773) 296-9900

American Board of Plastic Surgery, 1997

Dr. Teplica uses his unique dual training in the Fine Arts and Plastic Surgery to guide scientific investigation of human anatomy. The information generated enriches both his artistic explorations, but also allows for a more natural approach to surgical manipulation of body form in his profession as a plastic surgeon. Dr. Teplica has proposed a new concept of “anatomic predetermination” after performing background scientific work that showed that anatomic features are genetically predetermined for both their 3-dimensional location as well as the timing of their expression on the surface of the body.

Using his interest in twin research and his dual training in the Sciences and Fine Arts, Dr. Teplica employs tools from the visual arts to develop techniques for highly standardized digital imaging and analysis of anatomy. With these techniques, he can “virtually dissect” the body and provide critical insights that inform his surgical, academic, and artistic work.  Insights resulting from this approach have included new ideas about surgical analysis, embryologic growth and development of the human body, aging patterns, gender difference, skin appearance, and the symmetry/asymmetry of surface anatomy. They have also inspired several new bodies of photographic work.

Dr. Teplica started taking a cross-disciplinary approach during his education. As a Penn State undergraduate, he was permitted to create a unique major to study the human system–drawing and sculpting the body while learning its anatomy and physiology. His thesis on the anatomic evolution of man helped garner entrance into Dartmouth Medical School. During his seven-year surgical residency at the University of Chicago, Dr. Teplica received the Trustee’s Scholarship from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and earned a Master of Fine Arts Degree. Concurrently, he also launched his twin research efforts with a Surgical Scientist Training Grant from the National Institutes of Health in 1989, and that project continues to this date.

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