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The UN Experience

By Dr. Juris BunkisMarch 14, 2023No Comments

By Drs. Bunkis & Ekstrom

We heard the Foreign Minister of Pakistan, Bilawai Bhutto Zardari, address the Assembly

Last week we spoke about a trip to the California Senate. This past week we were honored to spend time at the United Nations in New York City. We began our day with a visit to the Latvia’s Permanent Mission to the UN and ended the following day with a dinner with the Latvian Ambassador to the UN, Andris Pildegovics, and a most amazing person of Latvian heritage, a Holocaust survivor as a child, George Schwab (Google him for a very interesting read), who went on to become a history professor in New York. Professor Schwab co-founded the National Committee on American National Policy in 1974 and went on to run this organization. One accomplishment of the NCANP was bringing the IRA and Loyalist Militants together to hammer out the Northern Ireland peace deal in 1994. Recently Professor Schwab published Odyssey of a Child Survivor: From Latvia Through the Camps to the United States, a most fascinating book. Needless to say, the dinner was quite stimulating!

The visit to the UN itself was quite interesting and thought provoking. This week, the UN celebrated International Women’s Day, a day set aside to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. 123 nations have served on the Human Rights Commission over the years, some of which do not treat men and women equally. We sat in on a General Assembly discussion about March 15th, a day set aside by the UN as International Day to Combat Islamophobia and religious intolerance. We were fortunate to hear Secretary-General Antonio Guterres address the Assembly on this issue. We heard the Foreign Minister of Pakistan, Bilawai Bhutto Zardari, address the Assembly.

Many inspirational words were said regarding tolerance, inclusiveness and the eradication of all hate thought and religious discrimination. These are laudable goals and much needed, but we know that in many parts of the world, many of the same countries sitting in this Assembly, do not allow freedom of religion in their countries. There is still much work left to be done!

Spotlight on Plastic Surgery – "What Happens to my belly button during a tummy-tuck"

by John Compoginis, M.D., F.A.C.S.

Nearly every tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) patient I have asks about the belly button (umbilicus) and what happens to it. Some want to know if they will get a new belly button, some ask how it gets repositioned and some want to have theirs modified in some way. During an abdominoplasty with umbilical transposition, your belly button stays in the exact same location throughout the surgery and after surgery. In very rare cases of massive weight loss or large umbilical hernias the belly button may need to be removed. But for the overwhelming majority of tummy tuck patients the belly button is kept the same or improved. As far as the details… the belly button is preserved and kept in its original native location by surgically circumscribing it and preserving its blood supply.

Actual patient of Dr. Compoginis

The skin around the belly button is elevated from the muscles, away from the belly button and moved in a downward direction. The excess skin is then removed and discarded. A new hole is surgically created in the repositioned abdominal skin and the belly button is then delivered through it and sutured in place. The belly button can be modified in many ways including shape and size. An “out-y” can be made into an “in-y” and if there is an umbilical hernia this can be repaired also. Below are two examples of before and after a tummy tuck with umbilical transposition.

If you want to see if you can have any part of your body improved, contact us for a consultation:

For CA, please call 949-888-9700 or visit
Or for MA location, call 508-755-4825 or visit

You can write to
Dr. John Compoginis at Contact Us Form
Dr. Staci Compoginis at Contact Us Form
Dr. Deborah Ekstrom at
or Dr. Juris Bunkis at Contact Us Form