Lower Extremity Reconstruction
Both traumatic and elective orthopedic patients can require soft tissue reconstruction of the lower leg to protect underlying structures following either injury or following surgery should their wounds not heal appropriately.
Following knee replacement surgery, for example, the incision overlying the newly placed hardware can occasionally break down secondary to a number of factors. A Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon may be necessary at such times to provide the proper soft tissue coverage such as with skin, fat, and muscle, preserving the new hardware and expediting physical rehabilitation.
Because the skin in the lower leg is relatively thin, it is susceptible to traumatic injury, especially if the bones are injured as well. At times, the resulting injury to the skin is severe and the bones may become exposed. A Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon may then be required to ensure that the open wound is closed to limit the risk of infection and to allow adequate healing of any fractures. This coverage may require something as simple as a skin graft or a more elaborate transfer of muscle.