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Burns and Wounds: 4 Surgical Alternatives

Mch - Plastic Surgeon , MS - General Surgery, MBBS
Cosmetic/Plastic Surgeon, Hyderabad  •  21 years experience
Burns and Wounds: 4 Surgical Alternatives

4 Plastic surgery alternatives for burns and wounds

The branch of plastic surgery that is generally used for the treatment of burns and other wounds is known as reconstructive plastic surgery. There are numerous surgical methods that fall under this category, which is effectively used to treat these injuries and the related issues that they cause.

What are medical issues caused by burns and wounds?

Some of the most frequently occurring issues that stem from burns and similar wounds are as follows:

- Restriction of mobility
- Aesthetic disfigurement and scarring
- Loss of sensation in the affected area

The different issues are caused by varying kinds of burns and injuries and, hence, each case must be approached in a different manner for remedy.

Different kinds of plastic surgeries that are used for treatment

Depending on the nature of the injury, your plastic surgeon may opt for any of the following surgical methods for treating the problem.

1. Skin grafting

In this procedure, skin is removed from one part of the body and transplanted to the affected area. This method is used for the treatment of burns. There are two types of this surgical procedure - one removes a few layers from the dermis of the donor area (split-thickness graft) while the other removes the entire dermis (full-thickness graft). Recovery time depends on the kind of procedure used. Skin grafting is occasionally used for breast and nose reconstruction as well.

2. Microsurgery

This type of surgery makes the use of a microscope in reconstructive procedures for working on minuscule veins, arteries, and nerves for repairing damaged areas. Microsurgery is often used alongside other surgical procedures for re-attaching body parts, relieving paralysis of the face and in the reconstruction of breasts.

3. Tissue expansion

This method is used to induce the growth of extra skin on the body that can be used for reconstructive purposes. This is done by inserting a balloon expander underneath the skin that slowly gets filled with saline solution and makes the skin swell. This excess skin is then used for correction or reconstruction of the affected area.

4. Free flap procedure

This procedure involves the transfer of skin, bone, muscle and blood supply from the donor area to the damaged area for repairing purposes. Microsurgery is often performed alongside this treatment method, which is used most frequently for breast reconstruction or after the removal of cancer from the neck or head. Free flap is also used in defects which can't be covered by simple skin grafts especially in areas where vital structures are exposed. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a cosmetic-plastic-surgeon.

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