Ralph Millard

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David Ralph Millard, Jr. (June 4, 1919 – June 19, 2011) was a plastic surgeon who developed several techniques used in cleft lip and palate surgeries. He was chief of the Division of Plastic Surgery at University of Miami's Miller School of Medicine for 28 years, and maintained a private practice in Miami.

Early life[edit]

Millard was born at Barnes Hospital, St. Louis, Missouri. He attended the Asheville School in Asheville, North Carolina.[1] He played football at Yale, studied medicine at Harvard Medical School in 1944 and interned in pediatric surgery at Boston Children's Hospital. A U.S. Navy veteran, he served stateside in World War II but in Korea during the Korean War, where he became interested in local children with cleft lips.

The Millard repair procedure[edit]

The rotation-advancement procedure for cleft lip repair, also known as the Millard repair, is designed to create a softer, more natural-looking lip. Surgery performed prior to the Millard procedure involved pulling both sides of the cleft lip together resulting in a tightly closed upper lip. The Millard procedure rotates the tissue and creates a "Z" shaped scar instead. The "Z" shape gives the tissue more elasticity, resulting in greater flexibility and restoration of the Cupid's bow.[2]


In 2000, Millard was nominated as one of "10 Plastic Surgeons of the Millennium" by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. In the April 2000 issue of Plastic Surgery News, Millard was described as "the most brilliant and creative plastic surgeon we have alive. His work and publications speak for themselves."[3] He is considered to be one of the founders of modern reconstructive facial surgery.

Personal life[edit]

Millard had two sons,(Duke and Bonn) a daughter (Melody), and six grandchildren.


  • Gillies HD, Millard DR. The Principles and Art of Plastic Surgery. Butterworth. 1958.
  • Millard R, Pigott R, Zies P. Free skin grafting of full-thickness defects of abdominal wall. Plast Reconstr Surg. 1969
  • Millard DR, Total reconstructive rhinoplasty and a missing link. Plast. Reconstruct Surg 37:167-171, 1966.


  1. ^ https://www.ashevilleschool.org/alumni/notable-alumni
  2. ^ "Medicine: CLeft-Lip Craft". TIME. 1976-08-23. Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  3. ^ "April 2000-volume 105-issue 5: Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery". Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Journal. April 2000. Retrieved 2010-07-16.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]