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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    What is skin grafting and when is it used for plastic surgery?

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    Dr Anh Nguyen

    Plastic Surgeon (Reconstructive & Cosmetic)

    Dr Anh Nguyen (MBBS (Hons) PGradDipSurgAnat FRACS (Plast)) is a highly qualified, Australian-trained and registered Plastic, Reconstructive and Cosmetic Surgeon based in Perth, WA. She … View Profile

    A skin graft is skin that is taken from one part of the body and transplanted to another part of the body which is deficient of skin and or soft tissue. It is used in plastic surgery to reconstruct a defect that may be caused by trauma (degloving injury, burn etc), infection requiring debridement, malignancy (skin cancer or other cancers or tumours) or congenital defects for example.

    Skin grafts are essentially a means of wound closure where primary closure (suturing the wound directly may not be possible or should not be performed). Skin grafts are either split thickness (taken with a blade like shaving a thin piece of skin off) or full thickness (excising the skin and closing the donor site). Skin grafts can be harvested from anywhere with viable skin but it is best to harvest skin grafts from sites that have a similar appearance and quality to the defect that you are trying to reconstruct.

    Split thickness skin grafts are often taken from the thighs, buttocks and arms. Full thickness grafts can be taken from the neck, around the ears, in the groin - essentially anywhere where the donor site can be closed.


  • Anonymous

    Thank you for this information, its a fantastic service.  As a follow-up question, what are the probabilities of a FTSG not taking on the nose?  and if it fails, what would the plastic surgeon do next?

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