Facial Reconstructive Surgery
Dr. Schwartz maintains an active reconstructive practice for patients afflicted with face and nose skin cancer. Such patients often present with potentially devastating facial defects as a result of treatment for this serious and common problem. These patients require the highest level of reconstructive plastic surgical skill in order to be able to resume normal social interactions without feeling self conscious about their appearance. There is no part of the human anatomy that more defines personality and affects how we are perceived by others than the face. As it is literally the first thing anyone sees of us, a deformity of the face can lead to embarrassment or low self esteem and insecurity. This is when facial reconstructive surgery can be helpful. To find out how facial reconstruction is defined, how it is performed and who can benefit from it please see the information below.
What is Facial Reconstructive Surgery?
Facial reconstruction is plastic surgery that re-forms the face after serious injury or after the loss of facial tissue to disease such as cancer. It can include reshaping the eye or lip area, reconnecting damaged muscles or nerves, or filling in tissue excised during the removal of tumors or cancerous cells.
How is Facial Reconstructive Surgery Preformed?
Facial reconstructive surgery is a highly individualized process and a qualified plastic surgeon must carefully assess a patient’s health and needs before deciding on a treatment plan. Dr. Schwartz has experience working in these special instances and will work with you to determine your desired result and offer his expert insight. The exact process depends on the cause of the deficit and what tissue has been damaged or lost. It can include bone and cartilage transplants, the rearranging of skin and muscle, and sometimes the use of artificial implants. The procedure may require two or more separate operations with healing time in between, especially if some of the underlying structures of the face – such as the nose or cheekbones – must be rebuilt.
Who is a Candidate for Facial Reconstructive Surgery?
Anyone who has a facial deformity and who is healthy enough for surgery can benefit from the procedure. This can include people who have had a traumatic injury to the face, have had skin cancer lesions removed, have suffered facial nerve damage from disease, or who have had cancer of the lips or mouth.
What are the Benefits of Facial Reconstructive Surgery?
Self esteem and restored functionality are vital aspects resulting from the. Reconstructive surgery can, for example, return a patient’s ability to breath, speak and eat normally and can restore normal sensation and the ability to expression emotions.
How Much Does Facial Reconstructive Surgery Cost?
This is completely dependent on the type of surgery and the extent of the repairs. Some procedures may be performed on an outpatient basis while others may require a hospital stay. Because many facial reconstructions address serious health concerns and quality-of-life issues, they are often covered by medical insurance.
Facial Reconstruction FAQ
After surgery, will I look exactly the same as I did before?
While modern plastic surgery techniques can produce amazing results, every case is different. Usually improved function and a more normal appearance is achieved, but most patients will not look exactly as they did before their illness or injury.
Is reconstructive surgery painful?
As with all surgical procedures, there will be some postoperative discomfort. Dr. Schwartz will be able to prescribe pain medication if you need it.
Will I have new scars?
Reconstructive surgery can cause some scarring. Your surgeon will take measures to reduce the amount of new scarring, but, in some cases, additional procedures may be needed to minimize the appearance of new scar tissue.
Dr. Schwartz presents these case studies on his aesthetic website because he believes that the high level of expertise, training and experience that is gained from this part of his practice also enhances the techniques and results he can provide for his aesthetic patients. As the following case studies demonstrate Dr. Schwartz’ training and experience has him well prepared to correct or enhance any facial deformity.
Warning! The following case studies contain medically graphic photos of facial defects and deformities. Do not proceed unless you are comfortable viewing such types of information.
* Each patient is unique and individual results may vary
The patient is seen following reconstruction of a complete through and through defect of the left nostril and rim.
Before and after repair of upper lip defect.
Before and after repair of the nose-eye region.
Before and after repair of complete nasal skin loss with extension to the right cheek.
Six months later he presents with recurrence of disease on the left side with superior extension (top photo). Because of the rapid recurrence and malignant transitional nature of his skin it was elected to remove all nasal skin entirely. He is seen before removal of any lesions (bottom left) and after total reconstruction (bottom right).
The patient is seen on left after previous skin cancer removal and reconstruction by a different surgeon. She now has recurrent cancer. Middle photo shows extent of removal needed to treat recurrent cancer. She is seen on right following reconstruction of middle photo defect by Dr. Schwartz.