During microsurgery, Dr. Morse uses a microscope or magnifying device in the operating room to operate on small blood vessels and nerves. These techniques are commonly used to assist in a reconstructive procedure called free tissue transfer.

Free tissue transfer involves the placement of tissue grafts called flaps, which can correct or improve a variety of physical defects. During a free tissue transfer procedure, microscopic blood vessels are reconnected in the graft recipient site with meticulous care.

Indications for Microsurgery

Dr. Morse can use a microsurgical technique to restore function or appearance after trauma or removal of tumors. The following are common indications (or capabilities) for a free tissue transfer using microsurgical techniques:

  • Restoring function, such as in the muscles of the face
  • Covering exposed vital structures: joint surfaces, tendons, vessels, and bone
  • Restoring normal shape, such as in breast reconstruction after mastectomy

Microsurgery often requires several hours, so a good candidate must be able to tolerate a long operation. You should be capable of understanding the risks and possible complications involved, including the effects of flap loss.

If Dr. Morse recommends microsurgery, he will explain the procedure in depth during your consultation and answer any questions you have. Surgery risks, costs and other important details will be discussed, so you have an adequate understanding of the procedure before you choose to proceed.

Flap Indications

The size and location of the defect will determine the indications for a microsurgical reconstruction procedure, as well as the type of flap that will be used. Defects may be a single, isolated tissue type or a combination of tissues including skin, subcutaneous tissue, nerves, muscle, tendons, cartilage, bone, and mucosa.

How Microsurgery Works

Dr. Morse surgically removes the tumor or diseased area and the recipient site is prepared. After carefully matching and preparing the tissues and blood vessels, Dr. Morse connects the blood vessels of the graft with the vessels of the recipient site, in a technique called anastomosis.

Before the procedure is complete, Dr. Morse carefully checks to ensure blood vessels do not have excessive tension and are not kinked or twisted. Blood flow is established and checked as well. The flap is closely monitored after surgery to ensure viability.

To learn more about microsurgery and free tissue transfer, contact the office of reconstructive surgeon Dr. Martin Morse.