Reconstruction of the Face
The face is prone to various types of skin cancers, which include basal cell, squamous cell, and melanoma. The key to reconstructing the face after cancer resection is to make sure the cancer has been completely removed prior to reconstructing the missing parts. If not, it is very difficult to eradicate and will likely recur and develop metastases.
The principles for reconstructing the face are to understand the anatomy and the to vectors of force that will be placed with the reconstruction. For example, the surgeon would not want to reconstruct a cheek defect with a vector of force pulling downward, which will lead to the lower lid being everted and causing more problems. The face presents a difficult challenge depending on the location. There are various surgical techniques that have been described for its reconstruction, many of these techniques are complex, include skin grafts, local tissue rearrangement, and perhaps even require free tissue transfer from other parts of the body. The goals is to leave you looking like you never had a procedure done, and perhaps take off a few years off your face at the same time!