Precision Wound Reconstruction

Techniques for healing simple to complex wounds may include skin grafting, microsurgery, flap surgery, or the use of a tissue expander. Because wounds will differ in size, shape, and location, as well as in the way they affect a patient’s range of motion and comfort, wound reconstruction must be highly customized and precision-oriented. At The LaVie Institute, we choose best-in-class technology coupled with state-of-the-art clinical acumen to help clients reclaim their wellbeing and quality of life.

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Why Choose The LaVie Institute?

At The LaVie Institute, we provide an interdisciplinary approach, combining the skill and artistry of four board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeons to optimize your outcome. Our comprehensive and patient-centric care helps clients to achieve an elevated quality of life with enhanced peace of mind.

As a group, we provide surgical and non-surgical treatments at the Center for Wound Healing at the Swedish Medical Center. All four providers at LaVie are certified physicians in hyperbaric medicine and we supervise hyperbaric oxygen therapy treatments at Swedish. By utilizing best-in-class technology in an accredited, safety-oriented setting, we exceed patient expectations, delivering a world-class experience from start to finish.

Repairing Complex Wounds

A complex wound is one that has not resolved over the course of several months. The wound may have increased in redness, changed color, exhibited increased swelling, or may be releasing an unpleasant odor. Healing may be delayed in some cases by medical conditions, immunosuppression, dietary deficiencies, neurological disorders, damage from radiation, or lifestyle factors such as alcohol consumption and smoking.

To close the wound, intricate surgical manipulation may be necessary in order to solve problems related to function and appearance.

Reconstruction techniques may include the following:

  • Skin grafting 
  • Tissue flap transfer
  • Direct wound closure
  • Tissue expansion
  • Vacuum-assisted closure
  • Debridement or wound cleaning
  • Microsurgery

Wound Care Treatment Options

Skin Grafts

A skin graft can help bridge the distance between the sides of a wound that is difficult to close. The graft is taken from a donor site and used to create a more natural-looking skin surface covering the wound. 

The three types of skin grafts include:

  • Split-Thickness Graft using the skin layers closest to the surface.
  • Full-Thickness Graft to cover jointed areas or treat deep, large wounds.
  • Composite Graft to create additional underlying support for the wound.

Flap Surgery

To heal a wound, a flap containing tissue, fat, and sometimes muscle may be taken from a donor area and transplanted to the treatment zone. Flap surgery has helped many patients dealing with severe injuries and disfigurement. The original blood supply to the flap may remain intact, or microsurgery can be used to reconnect the flap to new blood vessels in the wound location. 

  • A local flap uses tissue that is situated adjacent to the wound. 
  • A regional flap remains attached to a specific original blood vessel
  • A musculocutaneous flap is used when a more robust blood supply is required
  • A bone/soft tissue flap transfers both bone and skin to repair the wound
  • A microvascular free flap is detached from its original blood supply and then is reattached near the wound through microsurgery
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After surgery, it is normal for patients to feel discomfort and soreness. Our surgeons will prescribe the appropriate pain medications along with detailed aftercare instructions. Small drains may be placed to help remove excess fluids and blood from the body. A cast or customized dressing may be in place until the wound has fully healed.

Most patients require physical therapy or rehabilitation sessions to preserve range of motion. Our team will work closely with your therapist to recommend the ideal exercises to maximize your outcome. Heavy lifting and strenuous exercise should be avoided for several months while the tissues recuperate.

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