Since 1982 Dr. McKay McKinnon has led plastic surgical missions to developing countries. These missions have provided surgical care to children and adults with clefts and craniofacial anomalies, tumors, burns, trauma and other complex conditions. Teaching of local surgeons and pediatricians has been an important activity of these missions. Dr. McKinnon has provided craniofacial care and teaching in Belize, Honduras, Mexico, Portugal, India, Peru, Vietnam, Thailand, and Romania. For 28 years he led a surgical mission team to Choluteca, Honduras in partnership with Fondation San Jose Obrero.

Since 2011 Dr. McKinnon has conducted regular surgical missions to hospitals in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, and Hue, Vietnam. He is the first fellowship trained, board certified craniofacial plastic surgeon to conduct a sustained practice in Vietnam, where he is also a licensed doctor and hospital surgery staff member. Dr. McKinnon has successfully operated and consulted on hundreds of patients with complex tumors and craniofacial conditions which other doctors declared to be “inoperable”. To expand this model of care Surgery SOS was founded in 2016 as a charitable 501 (c) 3 organization. Its model is provision of highly experienced care for craniofacial anomalies and complex tumors to patients in need, whether from lack of local expertise or financial hardship.The model does not resemble missions of large volunteer cleft surgical teams.SurgerySOS is different in that it finds the patients in need, evaluates their conditions, both physical and financial, then works with the assistance of local physicians, surgeons and financial institutions.The surgical missions are restricted to a small team of highly experienced, board certified surgeons working directly with local staffs of the best hospitals and tertiary referral centers.Repeat missions to those same facilities on a frequent schedule and constant communication with local doctors also separates SurgerySOS from other large group missions. We aim for the best quality results, not the largest number of patients served.

SurgerySOS consults from Chicago directly with patients, partner foreign doctors and compatible charitable groups from around the world. Patient recovery is monitored by local partner doctors and any patients with need for follow-up surgery can be confident it will be provided by SurgerySOS.

Dr. McKinnon maintains an interest in plastic surgery worldwide and has lectured in Canada, Mexico, Great Britain (England, Scotland), France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Romania, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Israel, India, Thailand, Vietnam, Japan, Australia, Peru, and Brazil. He has introduced new plastic surgery techniques in nasal reconstruction, craniosynostosis, bilateral cleft lip, vascular malformations, aesthetic craniofacial surgery, orbital tumors and neurofibromatosis.


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