Facial reconstructive surgery can restore muscles, skin, cartilage, and the facial skeletal structure. This type of procedure may be necessary to reinstate a normal function and appearance of the face following an injury, skin cancer surgery, or a congenital defect. The outcomes can offer the patient renewed confidence and a new zeal for life.
Dr. Jamie L. McGinness is a board-certified dermatologist and the only fellowship-trained Mohs surgeon currently serving the Metro East Illinois St. Louis area. Dr. McGinness provides surgical dermatology procedures to patients in Shiloh, IL; St. Louis, MO, and neighboring locations.
Understanding the Procedure
Reconstructive surgical procedures are diverse and usually recognized by insurance providers as a medical necessity. Facial reconstruction after skin cancer excision may be undertaken on an outpatient basis. This surgery can be carried out under local anesthesia with sedation or general anesthesia.
The exact nature of the surgery depends on the extent of the injury and individual desires and goals of the patient. Effectively, the outcomes of the reconstructive surgery will take many months to become apparent on account of the slow resolution of discoloration and scars.
The patient will need to practice wound care after the procedure, which includes the use of sun protection and moisturizers. The surgeon will offer in-depth advice on the procedure itself and what to anticipate in the recovery phase.
Facial reconstruction following skin cancer removal is a significant part of the treatment. There are various types of skin cancers and most are excised surgically. The defect that is an outcome of this excision frequently warrants surgical repair. The surgery’s extent depends on the location and level of complexity of the wound.
Options for Reconstructive Surgery on the Face after a Mohs Procedure
While Mohs surgery does remove cancer, it can leave the patient with disfiguration in some cases. Once the bandages from the original surgery come off, it is safe to go ahead with a facial reconstructive surgery.
Cartilage Grafting: The ear is the most common donor area for cartilage grafting, but it can also be sourced from a rib.
Flap Technique: This technique involves a free flap or local flap. Local flaps are categorized further into advancement, rotation, transposition, and interpolation. All local flap procedures center on freeing and rotating surrounding tissue to cover the site which has exposed due to Mohs surgery. The tissue stays attached to the body and its blood vessels go through the donor site to enter the flap.
Tissue Expansion: This surgery involves the placement of a silicone balloon extender beneath the skin near the site of the Mohs surgery. The surgeon fills this balloon with salt water which enables the skin to stretch and grow over the site of the original surgery.
Skin Graft: A skin graft procedure involves the surgeon removing healthy skin from a less noticeable area of the body, stitching it up, and then transferring it to cover the site of the cancer removal. The use of skin grafting, as well as tissue expansion, is less frequent in skin cancer facial reconstruction in comparison to other forms of plastic surgery.
Board certified dermatologist Dr. Jamie McGinness receives patients from Shiloh, IL; St. Louis, MO, and other towns and cities in this region of the Midwest.
If you would like to learn more about procedures and treatments at Metro East Dermatology & Skin Cancer Center by Board Certified Dermatologist Dr. Jamie L. McGinness please contact us here or call (618) 622-SKIN (7546)
Taking new patients in and around the greater St. Louis, Missouri and Illinois area: East St. Louis Missouri, Shiloh Illinois, Belleville, Millstadt, Saint Clair County, Madison County and more.