Mark E. Richards is a distinguished plastic surgeon based in North Bethesda, Maryland with over twenty-five years of experience. Certified by the American Boards of Surgery and Plastic Surgery, Dr. Richards is an internationally recognized leader in his specialty, committed to helping patients achieve their aesthetic goals through a broad range of procedures. He provides services that range from facelifts to bio-identical hormone treatments and everything in between. Patients travel across the globe to take advantage of his skills and expertise. As the founder of Ageless Impressions Plastic Surgery Institute and a pioneer of the Minimal Incision Arm Lift, his industry-leading service has earned him numerous accolades from the Consumer's Research Council of America, U.S News & World Report, and many other prestigious organizations. He has served as President of the Washington DC metropolitan area’s chapter of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons as well as the President of the 2000-member County Society representing all physicians in Montgomery County, Maryland.
As he tells it, Dr. Richards’ fascination with science and natural empathy towards mankind led him to the career of medicine:
I have always loved intellectual and physical challenges. Even as a young child, I would take things apart to see how they worked and put them back together. While in college, I looked at various careers that would include the creative sciences such as engineering. In the end, the fact that medicine allows you the opportunity to improve people’s quality of life through scientific analysis won out. Plastic Surgery is unique in all of medicine as the only ‘no limits’ problem-solving specialty where artistic and intellectual creativity coupled with hard scientific analysis is encouraged!”
Dr. Richards graduated cum laude from Yale University in 1979. He attended the University of Maryland School of Medicine where he fell in love with the creativity and problem solving necessary in plastic and reconstructive surgery. After earning his medical degree in 1983, he completed his full training in both general surgery and plastic surgery through an internship and several residencies across seven years. In 1990, Dr. Richards founded the Ageless Impressions Plastic Surgery Institute, a practice based on creative and scientifically proven advanced techniques and treatments.
What sets Dr. Richards apart from his peers is his commitment to creative and individualized treatments for each patient. From breast augmentation to tummy tucks and rhinoplasty, he utilizes state-of-the-art technology and his natural problem-solving skills to deliver beautiful, natural-looking results in a safe and effective manner. He is perhaps most renowned for his innovation of the Minimal Incision Arm Lift. This procedure, which revolutionized the field of brachioplasties, produces minimal scarring and has been detailed in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal. Dr. Richards is also world-renowned for his work in bio-identical hormone treatments, which involves treating with approved time-release pellets of human hormones that help restore each patient’s vitality and physical health.
Dr. Richards’ expertise has made him one of the most widely lauded plastic surgeons in the world. He has been listed in Consumer's Research Council of America’s Guide to America's Top Surgeons every year since 2002 and was named a Top Doctor by U.S. News & World Report in 2013. He has also been cited and interviewed in numerous publications and TV news pieces, including the New York Times, Fox News, and CNN and has frequently been asked to speak at conferences around the world. Over the years he has worked with many high- profile clients, including serving as the plastic surgeon consultant to the White House since 2010, and testifying as an expert before the FDA.
As a leader in his specialty, Dr. Richards is constantly looking to the latest trends in medicine to provide his patients with the most effective and compassionate care. In addition to his busy Plastic Surgery practice, he is currently focusing attention on the epidemic of low testosterone in both men and women and the crushing costs it brings to society. He notes:
The very low testosterone levels in men and women, as well as children throughout the industrialized world, are due to the abundance of plastics in the environment. The phthalates leeching out from plastic are causing an epidemic increase in health problems such as diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular diseases, dementia, depression, and breast and prostate cancer due to the induced low testosterone states. They’re just starting to realize the enormity of the problem in Europe, but we are still quite behind in the United States. Just like with anything in medicine or science, it’s a struggle and a long process to change ‘experts’ ways of thinking because they will resist a paradigm shift in their thinking for many years.”
Dr. Richards’ dedication to excellent care does not stop with his own practice; he wants to make sure that patients everywhere have access to safe and effective medical care in general and aesthetic surgical procedures in particular. For him, this starts with well- educated surgeons. He is a strong advocate of and active participant in continuing medical education (CME), including instructing doctors around the world in a wide variety of topics, such as hormone therapy and the salvaging of unsatisfactory facelifts through aesthetic facial-curve restoration.
After over two and a half decades dedicated to medicine, Dr. Richards shows no signs of slowing down. Looking to the future, he plans to continue providing state-of-the-art, compassionate care to his patients while remaining an influential figure in the field of plastic surgery. He understands that cosmetic surgery is a major undertaking for his patients and nothing pleases him more than seeing a rejuvenated client walk out his door with a confident smile on their face.
Education, Training & Certification
Yale University (B.S., Biology, cum laude, 1979)
Professional Memberships & Associations
American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons • Montgomery County Medical Society, Former President • National Capital Society of Plastic Surgeons, Former President
Awards & Honors
America's Top Surgeons – Consumer's Research Council of America (2002-present) • Top Doctor – U.S News & World Report (2013) • Who’s Who National Registry, Lifetime Member • Cosmos Club Member (2005-present) • Top Plastic Surgeons – Consumer's Research Council of America (2006-2009) • Top Plastic Surgeons – Washingtonian Magazine (2005-2007) • Top Doctors – Washingtonian Magazine (1999, 2002) • Presidential Award– Montgomery County Medical Society (2000) • Presidential Award – National Capital Society of Plastic Surgeon (1999) • Outstanding Young Men of America (1996-1998) • Chairman of the Year – Montgomery County Medical Society (1996-1997) • Best Place for Liposuction & Laser Hair Removal – Baltimore Magazine International • International Society of Laser Surgeons