Scalp injuries are relatively common. They can be caused by burns, road accidents, medical procedures or inflammatory diseases. These injuries can lead to tissue deformation, loss of substance, unsightly scars or permanent scarring. The psychological impact can be significant.
Scalp restorative surgery can correct these after-effects, either by improving the appearance of the scar or by making it more discreet. There are several techniques that can be used:
- scar restoration
- skin grafting
- local plasty
Scar restoration is a common procedure in scalp surgery. The purpose is not to remove the scar but to make it more discreet. The surgeon re-opens the stabilized scar and closes it using a more appropriate suture technique. If the conditions are met, the surgeon can also reposition the scar to a less visible location. Finally, if there is a particularly embarrassing loss of substance, the surgeon can inject hyaluronic acid to improve its consistency.
When the wound is too deep or too large, the injury may become chronic and hard to close. In this case, a skin graft can be used to encourage the healing process. There are two main methods used today:
- Skin grafting in pellets: small fragments of skin are placed on the wound, which triggers a “re-epidermalization” process.
- Mesh skin grafting: the surgeon takes a piece of skin from a healthy part of the patient’s body and places it on the wound. Again, the goal is to encourage the healing process.