Skin Grafts are one of the most common methods for closing a wound after injury, or removal of tissue (for example after surgery for skin cancer). A skin graft is the technique of removing skin from one area of the body and placing it on another. Depending upon what is involved, skin grafts take the form of either full-thickness grafts or split-thickness. All grafts need a suitable bed upon which to be placed and so not all wounds (accidental or surgical) are suitable.
Full-thickness Skin Grafts are whole pieces of skin taken to rebuild defects in the skin. They are much more cosmetically acceptable than split-thickness skin grafts, but the place from which they are taken needs to have enough spare skin that it may be sutured closed. For this reason, full-thickness skin grafts are limited in size. Common places to take these grafts from are in front of (or behind) the ear, along the neck and along the groin. The end result should be that of a straight scar.
Split-thickness skin grafts are shavings of skin from, usually, the thigh or upper arm which leave behind them an area similar to a graze. This area heals by itself and so split-thickness skin grafts can be much larger than full-thickness skin grafts and this is their main advantage. However the end result is not as cosmetic as that of a full-thickness graft. Once healed, both the donor area and the skin graft eventually turn paler than normal skin.
Where a skin graft is not suitable, a local flap is often used.
To make an appointment to discuss Skin Grafts surgery in Peterborough or Cambridge, please contact Mr Price’s secretary.