Cosmetic skin reconstruction surgery can be a solution for a variety of different skin problems.
What is Skin Reconstruction?
Skin graft surgery is a procedure that involves removing skin from one part of the body and transferring it to another. This is often performed if a part of the skin has become damaged from burns, injury or illness.
The Skin Graft Surgery Consultation
Here at UK Aesthetic, we want you to feel as prepared as possible before committing to any cosmetic surgery procedure. That’s why we invite you to the clinic for a initial consultation to discuss the expectations you have for your surgery. It’s important that you share with us as much information about your current health and lifestyle as possible. You also have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have about the procedure. A surgery plan will be created as a result of this consultation – which includes costs.
Preparation for Surgery
Skin reconstruction surgery will require general anaesthetic, so if you have any health problems or if you’re feeling unwell then it’s important to let us know beforehand. There are some precautions you’ll need to take at least 6 weeks before surgery, including:
- Don’t take aspirin
- Stop smoking
- Stop taking herbal supplements
- Stop taking anti-inflammatories
In some cases, pre-operative tests may be required. Furthermore, after the surgery you should arrange for a friend or relative to collect you from the clinic. You should also take some time off work, which is usually about one week.
What to Expect During Skin Reconstruction Surgery?
There are two main techniques for skin reconstruction surgery. Depending on what is involved, they can take the form of either split-thickness or full-thickness.
In a split-thickness graft procedure, the top layer of skin (the epidermis) is removed along with a portion of the deeper layer of skin. New skin is taken from other areas of the body, most commonly the thighs, abdomen, buttocks or flanks. This extremely thin layer of skin is then used to cover large areas. These skin reconstruction grafts tend to be the most fragile, and may appear paler than the adjoining skin.
A full-thickness graft involves removing all of the outer layer and the deeper layer (dermis) from the chosen donor area of the body. This is typically the groin, forearm, abdomen or collarbone. The pieces of skin in this graft are smaller and thicker, usually used for small wounds. They also usually blend in better with the skin around them for a more pleasing aesthetic outcome.
What is the Recovery Period after the Surgery?
Some discomfort is typical after any surgery, so you may wish to take pain relief medication. It’s also important that you:
- Keep the wounds as dry as possible
- Avoid heavy lifting
- Avoid strenuous exercise or activity
You’ll be checked over in the dressings clinic a week after your surgery to ensure you’re healing well.
Who is Skin Graft Surgery Suitable For?
Any patient who has experienced trauma to the skin whether that’s from injury, burns or illness. Those with realistic surgery expectations.
Is Skin Reconstruction Painful?
The procedure is done under general anaesthetic, but afterwards you may feel some pain and discomfort. This is usually overcome with some painkillers.
What are the Risks or Complications?
The majority of patients are pleased with the results of the skin reconstruction surgery. However, the surgeon may explain that your skin graft hasn’t taken well with the surrounding area. This may happen because of infection, excess fluid or bleeding. Any risks will be discussed in detail with your UK Aesthetics surgeon.
How Much Does Skin Graft Surgery Cost?
Due to the nature of the surgery, the cost can vary depending on the patient’s needs. You will be provided with a full quote after your initial consultation.