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Whether the result of skin cancer or trauma, improvements in facial appearance can be achieved by someone experienced in such reconstruction. The type of reconstruction depends on the size of the defect and the location on the face. During your consultation, we will come up with the best plan based on your goals and objectives. It helps to see us prior to having skin cancers removed for our Pre-excision Consultation. This ensures you know what to expect before the procedure. Some common areas of reconstruction are found below.
Depending on the depth of the defect, often cartilage and skin need to be used to give the nose its proper form and function over time. Because the skin of the nose cannot be stretched, I often rely on either skin grafts or moving in flaps of skin from the cheeks or forehead.
Mouth trauma (Such as a dog bite) or in removal of skin cancer results in large defects of the lip. Depending on the extent of the defect, some can be closed that day without additional procedures. Others may require a more complex procedure. The complexity of the mouth arises from the fact that the mouth is a circular muscle. My goal is to maintain oral competency and maintain the appearance of the lip margins.
Defects of the ear typically need recreation of both cartilage and skin components. There are a variety of techniques employed by the skilled surgeon that allows re-creation of both elements. Depending on the defect and cosmetic goals of the patient, a multiple stage procedure may be necessary. Sometimes cartilage from the other ear may be used to help support the reconstruction and perhaps skin from behind the ear used to help cover other portions of missing ear. A dressing is typically worn for 1 week after surgery to prevent bleeding or a hematoma and allows for a better result.