Head and Neck Reconstruction
Reconstructive microsurgeons help reconstruct patients with defects in the head and neck region due to cancer, trauma, or other causes. Our goals are to rebuild whatever needed to be removed and restore appearance and function, such as the ability to speak and eat. These surgeries can be complex and each patient and defect is different. However, there are some common examples. One is rebuilding a patient’s jaw (mandible) using a bone from the leg (fibula free flap), hip (iliac crest free flap), or back (scapula free flap). Another common example is using tissue from the thigh (anterolateral thigh free flap) to reconstruct a patient’s pharynx (which connects the mouth to the esophagus) to restore the patient’s ability to eat. You can also rebuild a part of someone’s tongue with tissue from the arm (radial forearm free flap) or calf (medial sural artery perforator free flap).