Tissue expansion is a relatively straightforward procedure that enables the body to “grow” extra skin for use in reconstructing almost any part of the body. These include scar areas that occur after burns, accidents, or skin lesions. Tissue Expansion in Plastic Surgery replaces defective skin, which can be a challenging problem. This is different from skin grafts that almost always end up with a worse aesthetic appearance than the scarred skin.
During the past 3 decades, Plastic Surgeons introduced tissue expansion in plastic surgery, and have since applied it in a wide range of issues. It replaces damaged skin with neighboring skin similar in color, texture, sensation, and retained hairs and sweat glands, which is a huge advantage.
Tissue Expansion in Plastic Surgery is based on the principle of increasing the area of adjacent normal skin, and then using it to replace the area of defective skin.This includes skin stretching, as well as new skin formation.
Prof Wilson inserts a silicone balloon expander under the skin near the area to be repaired. Subsequently, he gradually fills it with saline over time, causing the skin to stretch and grow. He most commonly uses it for breast reconstruction , but also uses it to repair skin damaged by birth defects, accidents, surgery and in certain cosmetic procedures. Dr Wilson usually uses the rectangular, rounded or crescentic expanders, but other shapes are available for more specific locations. Sizes of the expanders vary from 30 ml to 1200 ml, depending on the site of skin available for expansion.
The best candidates for tissue expansion are those who have an ugly scarred area of skin next to a healthy area. Prof Wilson uses tissue expansion best when he positions the expander against a hard surface (e.g against the skull bones during scalp expansion). He can thus achieve maximal expansion of tissues. He also uses expansion in other areas such as the limbs and neck, but uses special techniques and more care and extra precautions.
During your consultation, Dr. Wilson will measure the area of deformed scarred skin, and plan the area to be expanded in adjacent normal skin. This involves precise mathematical calculations. He will decide the number of tissue expanders needed, as well as their shape, volume and base size. He will consider the design and location of each expander, and give you a rough estimate of the duration of time needed to achieve full expansion.
In advanced complicated cases, Prof Wilson might plan more than one session of tissue expansion. This necessitates a timetable to achieve the ultimate desired result.
Dr Wilson performs the surgery in two stages:
1- Prof Wilson inserts one or more deflated expanders under the healthy skin adjacent to the scarred ugly area. He performs this surgery under local or general anesthesia, although the latter is preferable when multiple expanders are inserted.
After a delay of 6-12 days, the assistant inflates the expander in the office of Dr. Wilson, usually 2-3 times weekly. The assistant injects an amount of fluid per session depending on the initial size of the expander. He also considers the quality of overlying skin. He usually injects a volume equal to 5-10 % the volume of expander. The duration of expansion can last 3-12 weeks depending on the size of the expander. It is of utmost importance that you avoid any deep pricks by a needle, which will rupture the expander.
2- Dr Wilson decides on the timing of the second surgery when the expander is fully inflated. Under general anesthesia, he removes the expander and ugly scar. Then he transposes the healthy expanded skin to cover the defect after removing the ugly scar.
A thin scar is all that results after suturing the new skin in place.
Please press here for a short video by Dr Wilson on how he inserts a tissue expander.
Prof Wilson warns you against infection since this may lead to extrusion of the expander. You should also avoid being pricked by any sharp needle in the area of the expander since this may lead to its rupture. Other minor risks include seroma formation and expander migration.
Professor Wilson believes that affordable cost plastic surgery is the right of every individual. He will never allow financial restraints to prevent you from having a juvenile beautiful appearance. Many factors affect the cost of Ear Surgery, including the extent of surgery, type of surgery, type of cartilage problems, and other factors. After the consultation, the patient coordinator will offer you an affordable price quote.