Lower Extremity Reconstruction

The lower extremity is your leg and foot. Your lower extremity can be affected after a serious accident or from cancer. Under both circumstances, you will receive different treatments for the consequences of having had an accident or cancer. Typically, there is a team of medical specialists and other health care workers involved in your care. The role of your plastic surgeon will be to help save your leg and repair it in such a way that you can use the leg again in future. Often a lot of physical therapy will be required until you can use your leg again, and full use as before may not be completely possible.

Your plastic surgeon will be involved in case there are tissues missing from your leg or foot that are required to get the leg or foot to heal. There are different scenarios, but often there is not enough tissue to cover exposed bones, joints, blood vessels, nerves or metal plates or prostheses that were used to fix your leg or foot. In that case, your plastic surgeon will assess your needs and choose a piece of “spare” tissue from another part of your body in order to repair and save your leg. The tissue taken can consist of one or more of the following: Skin, fat, muscle and bone. If a piece of tissue further away from the wound area is selected, then that piece of tissue will be taken together with small blood vessels to give the tissue a blood supply. The tissue will be used to repair the leg, and the blood vessels with it will be reconnected by your plastic surgeon to local blood vessels at the site of injury under the microscope..