Skin grafting is a reconstructive plastic surgery technique available for a number of purposes. Skin grafts may be recommended for:
- burn victims
- patients with extensive wounds
- specific surgery patients that require skin grafts for healing
- patients with areas of skin loss due to previous infection
- patients going through a series of reconstructive surgeries
Skin grafting is the surgical process through which the damaged or missing skin of scars or non-healing wounds is replaced with new skin or skin substitutes.
How is the procedure performed?
There are a number of techniques that may be employed during a skin grafting procedure:
- Autografts are skin grafts that take skin from one area of a patient's body and transplant it to another
- Allografts involve skin from a donor transplanted to a patient
- Xenografts involve tissue that has come from another species
- Integra dermal regeneration template is the only artificial material available for skin grafts that has been approved by the FDA
The type of procedure employed for skin grafts will depend on the patient's individual needs. There are risks and benefits to each technique that a skin grafts surgeon will evaluate prior to surgery. If a patient has enough undamaged skin and is healthy enough, autografting may be optimal. With this procedure the body is less likely to reject the transplanted skin.
The FDA approved Integra skin grafts product is a technology that may facilitate the body's acceptance and growth of its own skin. The Dermal Regeneration Template is composed of two layers: a silicone outer layer that temporarily acts as the epidermis and a porous matrix that acts as the patient's dermis. Once the body's own cells begin to grow back, the silicone layer is removed and the matrix layer biodegrades, leaving the patient with flexible and pliable growing skin.
How expensive is a skin graft?
The cost of skin grafts will depend on whether the procedure is medically necessary or sought for cosmetic purposes. In most situations, however, insurance will cover some or all of the cost of skin grafts.
In general, skin grafts can be an effective way to improve the quality of the wound site and prevent serious complications related to burns and wounds. If you would like to learn more about skin grafts, please contact us to speak with a qualified and experienced plastic surgeon in your area.