James Seaward, M.D.

  • Plastic Surgery
  • Congenital Facial Anomalies
  • Facial Trauma

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Pediatric Plastic Surgery (Plano)

at UT Southwestern Pediatric Group at Plano

7609 Preston Road, 1st Floor, Suite P1100, Plano, Texas 75024

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James Seaward, M.D., is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Plastic Surgery at UT Southwestern Medical Center. He specializes in treating cleft lip and palate, cleft palate-related speech problems, and vascular anomalies, exclusively in pediatric patients.

Originally from London, Dr. Seaward graduated with honors from Trinity College, Cambridge in England. He earned his medical degree at the Royal Free and University College Medical School in London and completed a plastic surgery residency in Manchester, England. He received advanced training in pediatric plastic and craniofacial surgery through a fellowship at UT Southwestern.

Passing his board exams in plastic surgery in the United Kingdom, he joined the UT Southwestern faculty in 2013.

A recognized expert in pediatric plastic and craniofacial surgery, Dr. Seaward directs the vascular anomalies and 22q deletion syndrome teams at Children’s Health. He also serves as Director of the Craniofacial Fellowship Program and Associate Program Director of the Plastic Surgery Residency Program at UT Southwestern.

He created a YouTube channel to explain the evaluation, complications, and treatment of cleft lip and palate. He has appeared on Good Morning Texas to discuss the importance of a multidisciplinary team in the care of children with a cleft.

Dr. Seaward is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of England as well as an active member of the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association and the International Society for the Study of Vascular Anomalies.

He has led clinical trials and research projects focused on improving the evaluation and treatment of patients with a cleft and cleft-related speech disorders, and he holds a patent for a device that enables infants with a cleft palate to breastfeed. He has coauthored a variety and number of articles in peer-reviewed medical journals.

Among his many honors, Dr. Seaward received the Clinician of the Year Award from UT Southwestern’s Department of Plastic Surgery in 2016, and he has been included in D Magazine's Best Doctors list.

Meet Dr. Seaward

Pediatric Plastic and Craniofacial Surgeon in Dallas

Dr. James Seaward, a pediatric plastic and craniofacial surgeon at Children’s Health and an Assistant Professor of Pediatric Plastic and Craniofacial Surgery at UT Southwestern Medical Center, was drawn to the practice of pediatric plastic surgery because of its potential to dramatically improve a child’s life.

“Repairing a cleft lip completely changes the psychosocial interactions a child will experience throughout his or her lifetime,” Dr. Seaward says. “And repairing a cleft palate gives a child the ability to speak and be understood.”

Dr. Seaward’s clinical practice is exclusively pediatric and, in addition to cleft lip and palate surgery, includes minimally invasive general pediatric plastic surgery, craniofacial surgery, vascular anomalies, and trauma reconstruction.

“Too many surgeons do both adult and pediatric surgery, treating a small number of pediatric plastic and craniofacial patients outside a formal team setting with no objective evaluation of the level of care they are providing,” he explains.

Children born with a cleft often need several surgeries from birth through adulthood, which requires the involvement of several health care providers. Dr. Seaward’s patients and their families have access to these providers during one clinic visit.

This approach allows his team – which is accredited by the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association – to coordinate and optimize the patient’s care together. 

Dr. Seaward says he is most inspired by how well many of his patients cope with the obvious differences they have. His most challenging cases are children who have suffered life-changing injuries.

He believes the future of pediatric plastic surgery will see an increase in limited-access techniques for craniofacial surgery, computer-aided customization of devices and procedures, and objective outcome measurements for craniofacial and cleft surgery.

Prior to joining the UT Southwestern faculty in 2013, he went to Ghana with Operation Smile, an international medical nonprofit that provides free surgeries to repair cleft lip, cleft palate, and other facial deformities for children around the globe.

“I enjoyed that work because it was a chance to dramatically transform the lives of children who would otherwise face a lifetime of stigmatization,” Dr. Seaward says.

His current research includes:

  • Developing an automated cleft speech evaluator
  • Exploring the applications of 3D video photography to evaluate dynamic facial asymmetry following cleft lip repair
  • Expanding applications of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for cleft-related speech disorders
  • Exploring computer-aided design and manufacturing in craniofacial surgery

Personal Note

Outside his practice, Dr. Seaward enjoys spending time with his wife and three children; playing the piano, violin, and trombone; sailing; and taking photographs. He is also an instructor-level skier and a Professional Association of Diving Instructors rescue scuba diver, and he holds a private pilot’s license.

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Education & Training
  • Medical School - Royal Free and University College Medical School (1997-2000)
  • Internship - Queen Elizabeth Hospital (2000-2001), General Surgery
  • Internship - Lister Hospital (2001-2001), General Surgery
  • Residency - Royal Berkshire Hospital (2001-2004), Surgical Rotation
  • Fellowship - UT Southwestern/Children's Medical Center (2011-2012), Pediatric Plastic Surgery
  • Residency - Royal College of Surgeons of England (2007-2013), Plastic Surgery
Professional Associations & Affiliations
  • American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association
  • International Society for the Study of Vascular Anomalies
Honors & Awards
  • D Magazine Best Pediatric Specialist, (2015-2016, 2018-2021)
  • Clinician of the Year 2016, UT Southwestern Department of Plastic Surgery
  • Mom-Approved Doctors 2016, DallasChild magazine
  • Poster Prize 2005, British Association of Plastic Surgeons
Books & Publications

Clinical Focus

  • Congenital Facial Anomalies
  • Facial Trauma
  • Skin Cancer Reconstruction
  • Laser & Skin Care
  • Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine

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