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Skin Cancer Reconstruction

Skin Cancer Reconstruction - New York, NY

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Most cases of skin cancer can be successfully and thoroughly removed through an excision procedure that removes the entire tumor and any roots. Despite its high level of efficiency, skin cancer excision often leaves behind large wounds or scars in prominent areas such as the face or hand. These deformities can be emotionally upsetting and a constant reminder of the skin cancer that once existed there. Fortunately, plastic surgery can be performed to repair the wound and restore your skin to a more healthy and natural appearance. While complete tumor resection is the main goal, New York City plastic surgeon, Dr. Dana Khuthaila, also takes the patient's appearance into consideration by leaving as much healthy tissue as possible. Reconstruction uses this remaining healthy tissue to carefully restore the area for both effective and aesthetic results.

Surgery Technique

Reconstruction can often be performed the same day or the day after the removal procedure. Reconstructive procedures are performed on an individualized basis, depending on each patient's wound, and can involve a skin graft, flap of skin, stitching or surgical closure. Dr. Khuthaila will discuss the various options with the patient and together they will choose the best method or methods of treatment. Dr. Khuthaila will work with the doctor performing the patient’s skin cancer removal to perform reconstruction either immediately after the removal or later if the patient chooses.

During/After Surgery

Patients may be put under local or general anesthesia depending on the location and size of the area being treated. Once the skin cancer lesion is removed, Dr. Khuthaila will begin reconstruction using the techniques she and the patient decided on during the initial consultation. Once the reconstruction is completed, Dr. Khuthaila will close and dress the wound before the patient is allowed to leave. Dr. Khuthaila will give every patient post surgical instructions, including how to care for the surgical wound, what topical medications to apply, and other tips to help with the patient's recovery. Avoiding sun exposure and using sun protection will help the wound heal quicker and without irregularities, like raised, red, or darker skin. It may take up to 1 year for patients to see the final results of their skin cancer reconstruction. If needed, Dr. Khuthaila will discuss a secondary surgery to further refine the results.

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Recovery Time  
3-4 Weeks
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Skin Reconstruction FAQs

Will There Be Scars?

While Dr. Khuthaila does her best to keep her incisions small and the wound closures clean and neat, there will be some degree of scarring. Scarring can be minimized by following Dr. Khuthaila’s post surgical wound care instructions. Dr. Khuthaila also performs surgical scar revision if the patient would like to further reduce the visibility of the scarring.

Why A Plastic Surgeon?

Even if a dermatologist removes the skin cancer growth, it is beneficial for patients to have a plastic surgeon performing the wound closure and/or skin reconstruction. Plastic surgeons, like Dr. Khuthaila are specially trained to preserve the appearance of the skin and they are more practiced at closing incisions cleanly and evenly.

When To Have Reconstruction?

It is best if patients make an appointment with Dr. Khuthaila before their skin cancer removal so she can consult and coordinate with the doctor and facility performing the skin cancer removal. Patients may chose to have their skin reconstruction performed right after their removal surgery or they can wait to see how the wound will heal naturally. During the initial consultation, Dr. Khuthaila will listen to the needs and concerns of the patient and then help them determine their best timeline and treatment plan.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.