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Joseph Kerwin Williams, M.D.

Board Certified in Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
Chief of Plastic Surgery at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite
Director of Research at the Center for Craniofacial Disorders
Associate Professor at Emory University in the division of Plastic Surgery
Co-Owner of AYA™ Medical Spa

Located at our Northside Location

Pediatric Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery

Every parent wants what is best for their child. That is why, when a child is born with a congenital defect or facial deformity, it is of the utmost importance that their condition is treated by an expert in pediatric reconstructive surgery. Dr. Joseph Kerwin Williams, a board certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon, is the Chief of Plastic Surgery at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite, Director of Research at the Center for Craniofacial Disorders, and an Associate Professor at Emory University in the Division of Plastic Surgery. Since he joined the Atlanta Plastic Surgery team in 1999, his goal has been to offer the very best in surgical pediatric care and to ensure your child a chance at his or her best possible future.

Dr. Williams performs Reconstructive Plastic Surgery procedures to correct a variety of different pediatric conditions, including:

  • Facial abnormalities in children are the result of congenital disorders (genetically-inherited conditions that are present at birth), disease, or accidental trauma. Regardless of the cause, reconstructive surgery can address those areas of concern and help improve a patient’s quality of life. As the Chief of Plastic Surgery at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite and Director of Research at the Center for Craniofacial Disorders, Dr. Williams specializes in reconstructive surgery of the face, and has a special interest in children’s reconstruction. Some of the facial deformities that Dr. Williams has treated include:

    • Cleft Lip, also known as Hare Lip, is a birth defect where the upper lip is split or separated either in the middle, on one side, or on both the sides. This deformity can be accompanied by misalignment of the jaw, missing teeth, or breathing problems.
    • Cleft Palate is a birth defect where there is a cleft or a split in the palate (commonly called “the roof” of the mouth).
    • Facial Cleft is a rare defect where the cleft lies in the middle of the face, resulting in skin and bone that may be missing.
    • Craniosynostosis is a congenital defect of the face where the fibrous joints (called sutures) of the skull fuse improperly and prematurely.
    • Plagiocephaly is a facial deformity in which the bones in the forehead and brow area stop growing, resulting in a flattening of one side of the head and prominence on the opposite side.
    • Brachycephaly is a condition characterized by a high and wide forehead region with the eyes abnormally far apart on the head.
    • Trigonocephaly is a facial defect that causes the forehead to become pointed with eyes abnormally close together.
    • Scaphocephaly a condition caused when the suture, or joint of the skull found in the middle of the head prematurely fuses, resulting in a long and narrow skull shape.
    • Microtia affects the ear on one or both sides of the head, causing them to grow improperly. Sometimes this can cause closing of the ear canal (atresia). Often corrected through otoplasty.
    • Deformational Plagiocephaly or a condition caused by repeated pressure to the same area of the head and a subsequent asymmetrical head shape in infants.
    • Vascular Malformations are birth defects affecting the veins and arteries, the most serious type is known as anteriovenous malformations. Other common types are known as lymphangioma and vascular gigantism. Vascular malformations are congenital and increase in size as a person grows.
    • Chin Deformity usually takes 2 forms – an abnormally small chin or unusually large chin. It may be corrected through cosmetic or reconstructive chin surgery.
    • Maxillary (Upper Jaw) Deformity affects the upper jaw. It can be in the form of a vertical maxillary excess, or a condition where the chin is recessed and the face and nose appear abnormally large in the profile.
    • Mandibular (Lower Jaw) Deformity – This type of birth defect affects the lower jaw and can be either mandibular excess (protrusion) or mandibular deficiency (retrusion). Defects of the lower jaw are the most common jaw defects.
    • Birthmarks / Hemangiomas, also known more commonly as port wine stains, are red spots, usually present at birth and tend to fade with age. Severe hemangiomas may need surgical attention involving skin grafting techniques.
    • Hemifacial Microsomia is a facial defect affecting the soft tissues and bones of the mouth, jaw, and ears.


    Many of the surgeries required to correct or improve upon these deformities are very complicated and specialized in nature. Multiple surgeries may be required. While most patients opt to have their facial deformity operated on as an infant or young child, adults can be candidates for reconstructive plastic surgery as well.