What Is Microsurgery?
Microsurgery is any surgery performed under the magnification of a microscope. Using a microscope allows the surgeon to operate structures that would be far too small to view and manipulate with the naked eye. This opens up exciting treatment pathways, that were impossible before microsurgery. With microsurgery, skilled surgeons can reattach blood vessels and nerves that are only 1mm in diameter, making tissue transfer much more effective.
Microsurgery is the most technically demanding area of plastic and reconstructive surgery, and is usually not the first choice in the reconstructive ladder. It is typically reserved for complex reconstructive surgery problems, where other options are inadequate. However, for these cases, it has been an incredibly powerful tool - probably the greatest modern surgical innovation.
Using an operating microscope, surgeons are able to operate on much smaller structures.
This enables surgeons to reattach large sections of tissue, muscle or bone from one part of the body to another, as well as reattach severed body parts (such as fingers or toes). Microsurgery makes this possible because surgeons can transfer live tissue, whilst ensuring that the transplanted tissue is immediately attached to blood supply and nerves. The blood vessels and nerves from the part being moved are carefully reattached, so that the new tissue or digit is effectively 'plumbed in' to the rest of the body.
This allows transfers, replantation and wound regeneration that would otherwise be impossible.
Why Dr. Salas?
Microsurgery is perhaps the most technically demanding area of plastic surgery. Because of this, it is important to choose a real expert, with experience in the field.As well as being board certified, Dr. Salas has also completed a microsurgery fellowship at the University of Washington, and both hand and general surgery fellowships.
When is Microsurgery Necessary?
Moving live tissue from one area of the body to another (free tissue transfer). Free tissue breast reconstruction is a good example of this, where tissue from the leg or back is used to reconstruct a living breast
Reattachment of severed parts (replantation). This can include digit replantation, where severed fingers and toes are reattached, and even ears.
Head and neck reconstruction using free tissue transfer. Very useful for complex facial reconstruction cases after severe burns or skin cancer .
Complex wound reconstruction.
Nerve repair and grafting.