The conception of the Society of Gynecologic Surgeons (SGS) began in the mid-sixties when two obstetrician-gynecologists, Dr. W. Byron Inmon and Dr. Wayne F. Baden, reviewed their benign gynecologic surgery, especially vaginal reparative procedures, and found them totally unacceptable. If the traditional training of these two Board certified, experienced gynecologists had failed them, then they were perpetuating these same deficiencies to those they trained. The gap between training and acceptable results was the "common interest" --- the conception --- that joined these two, then more and more gynecologists, together, first as a Study Group, then as District VII and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Special Interest Groups, next as the Vaginal Surgeons Society, and eventually, as the Society of Gynecologic Surgeons.
The first organizational meeting of the Vaginal Surgeons Society occurred on April 30, 1974, and was held in conjunction with the Annual Meeting of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in Las Vegas. The thirteen founding members present at the meeting included: Drs. Wayne F. Baden, Chairman, Edward B. Cantor, William E. Crisp, C. Paul Hodgkinson, Frederick J. Hofmeister, W. Byron Inmon, George E. Judd, Raymond E. Lee, Warren E. Patow, Jack R. Robertson, John C. Weed, Winfred L. Wiser, and Wayne W. Workman. There was discussion of the need for an organization dedicated primarily to reparative vaginal surgery and related gynecologic surgery. Both transabdominal and transvaginal approaches were to be included. Much emphasis was placed upon improving the "art" of vaginal surgery. Management of urinary incontinence was also an obvious area of major concern.
In 1982, The Society was restructured into the Society of Gynecologic Surgeons. It was decided the Society must redefine its goals and expand its membership in view of an increasing need for impact on surgical training in obstetrics and gynecology. The purpose of the Society was: the acquisition and dissemination of knowledge as it relates to the improvement of patient care through education and research. Objectives were: 1) the promotion and encouragement of teaching of anatomy, physiology, and pathology involving the female reproductive system, and 2) stimulation and continued improvement in surgical skills in gynecologic surgery. All members of the Vaginal Surgeons Society would be the Founding Members of the new Society and would invite ranking gynecologic surgeons in the country to become Charter Members, to develop sound guidelines for enlarging membership in the new Society, and to grow in a controlled manner.
Today, the Society of Gynecologic Surgeons is recognized as a select member group of over 250 physicians representing both private practice and academic faculty--all involved in teaching and the practice of advanced gynecologic surgery. Scientific Meetings are held annually with presentations and discussions of papers based on research in anatomy, physiology, pathology, surgical technique, or clinical results of gynecologic surgery by members and invited guests. A portion of the papers presented at the annual meetings are selected to be published in The American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
SGS has been led by these distinguished past presidents.