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About Dr. Zemmel

Founder of Richmond Aesthetic Surgery, Neil J. Zemmel, MD, FACS is a board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon. A native of Norfolk, Virginia, Dr. Zemmel attended Norfolk Academy preparatory school. He continued to the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, graduating with Honors with a Bachelors of Science in Chemistry and a minor in Art History. He also concentrated on such areas as physics, mathematics, French, and literature. During his time at William and Mary, Dr. Zemmel was recognized for his work through several awards and scholarships.

With a passion for medicine, Dr. Zemmel then attended medical school at the University of Virginia, where he studied internal medicine, obstetrics, surgery, and pediatrics and had a total of four medical research papers published. He even earned the high score of 98% on the U.S. Medical Licensing Exam.

Dr. Zemmel was then selected into a six-year combined plastic surgery program at the Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center in Richmond. He spent three years in general surgery, testing into the 90th percentile on the ABSITE General Surgery exam. Training included general, trauma, vascular, and transplant surgery with one full year focusing on learning techniques in the intensive care unit.

The next three years were focused on his plastic and reconstructive surgery training. This included head and neck reconstruction, head and upper extremity surgery, breast reconstruction, microvascular surgery, burn reconstruction, and cosmetic surgery. During his last year, Dr. Zemmel acted as Chief Resident of Plastic Surgery. He scored into the 92nd percentile on the Plastic Surgery In-Service Exam, and as a result, was given the S. Dawson Theogaraj Scholarship Award.


Following his medical training, Dr. Zemmel joined the medical center’s academic faculty, where he taught residents as well as conducted academic research. While on the staff, he performed complex surgeries of the head, neck, upper and lower extremities, such as traumatic and burn injuries of the face and hands.

In 2004 Dr. Zemmel entered private practice in Miami Beach, Florida. While here he practiced cosmetic plastic surgery in South Beach and the greater Miami area. He was featured in the media on several occasions for his expertise in the medical field, sharing his experience on the local news of Miami, West Palm Beach, and Richmond. Three years later, Dr. Zemmel returned to Virginia and founded Richmond Aesthetic Surgery

With a commitment to helping others, Dr. Zemmel has traveled to Guatemala with Operation Kids as part of the surgical mission group founded by Dr. Austin I. Mehrhof. This cause visits the country yearly and provides cleft lip, cleft palate, and burn reconstructions.

In addition to his mission work, Dr. Zemmel is a published author of countless medical research papers, covering such topics as microsurgery, burn surgery, use of computers in the medical field, and cosmetic surgery. He has found a particularly fascinating niche to be the research of breast reconstruction and cosmetic breast and body surgery. Dr. Zemmel lectures on a variety of topics, including advanced liposuction techniques, artificial skin technology, breast reconstruction, and state-of-the-art facial rejuvenation techniques. To learn more about Dr. Zemmel’s appearances, visit our in the media page.

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