General ReconstructionPlastic surgeon Beth Collins MD can perform a variety of reconstructive plastic surgery procedures, which are designed to refine or repair abnormal structures of the body. Reconstructive surgery is frequently employed to improve quality of life for people affected by birth defects, developmental abnormalities, trauma or injury, infection, tumors, or disease.
Who Should Get General Reconstructive Surgery?
Patients may be divided into two basic categories:
- Those who have congenital deformities, otherwise known as birth defects
- Those with acquired deformities, often a result of accident, infection, disease, or aging.
What Does General Reconstructive Surgery Do?Direct closure is usually performed on skin-surface wounds that have straight edges, such as a simple cut. Maximum attention is given to the aesthetic result.
A wound that is wide and difficult or impossible to close directly may be treated with a skin graft. A skin graft is basically a patch of healthy skin that is taken from one area of the body, called the "donor site," and used to cover another area where skin is missing or damaged.
Tissue expansion is a procedure that enables the body to "grow" extra skin by stretching adjacent tissue. A balloon-like device called an expander is inserted under the skin near the area to be repaired and then gradually filled with salt water over time, causing the skin to stretch and grow.
A flap is a section of living tissue that carries its own blood supply and is moved from one area of the body to another. Flap surgery can restore form and function to areas of the body that have lost skin, fat, muscle movement, and/or skeletal support.
Skin cancers and growths are usually removed by excision and closure, in which the growth is simply removed completely with a scalpel, leaving a small thin scar.
Whether the defect is congenital or acquired, plastic surgeons can usually restore comfort, mobility, and normal appearance to patients with hand problems. Plastic surgeons also reconstruct missing digits, including the thumb, which supplies half of the hand's function.
Laser surgery is noted for its ability to "blast" away or diminish imperfections or growths with minimum bleeding, bruising, and scarring.
After Reconstructive Surgery: What Should I Expect?As these procedures vary greatly, so does recovery, which can last anywhere from a day or so up to several weeks. Your plastic surgeon will outline what to expect following your reconstructive surgery. The above reconstructive procedures are ideal to help you quickly begin down the road to recovery. A consultation with your plastic surgeon will help you decide the appropriate treatment for you.
We encourage you to contact the Guilford office of plastic surgeon Dr. Collins to learn more about how her varied skills in reconstructive surgery can aid you. Use the online contact form or call our Guilford plastic surgery practice at 203-689-5295 to schedule a consultation.