If your child has been seriously injured, depending on the nature of the wound, you may well require pediatric plastic surgery services. If you do, and you live in the vicinity of Manhattan or Great Neck, you are fortunate to have accessibility to Dr. Brian D. Cohen, M.D. a fine plastic surgeon whose credentials are outstanding and whose reputation as a pediatric accomplished plastic surgeon is well-established. He also has extensive experience with pediatric patients and knows their special needs.
Dr. Cohen is well aware that you want to do everything possible to make certain your child can return to normal after the accident, not only in terms of mobility and mental status but in terms of appearance. He went into this field of medicine because he is committed to psychological as well as physical healing, and knows how damaging scars and other abnormalities may be to your child’s developing self-image.
When children suffer traumatic, possibly disfiguring, injuries their parents suffer too. Seeing your child’s smooth skin ripped, punctured, or burned is a horrible experience. Even when the injuries are not life-threatening, the thought that your child may have to bear the burden of an ugly scar, unattractive asymmetry of facial features, or some other aesthetic abnormality is very distressing. No one wants a child to have to go through life with an external mark that may draw embarrassing attention or result in painful teasing.
Types of Pediatric Traumatic Injuries Dr. Brian D. Cohen Treats
There are too many ways for children to suffer serious injuries — falls, burns, cuts, sports accidents, traffic accidents, etc. Since skin is the first line of defense, it is most often the first tissue impacted by the injury. Dr. Cohen has expertise in repairing:
- Deep abrasions
- Tears of the skin and fat layers beneath
- Burns caused by flames, hot liquids (scalds), explosion, extreme friction, electricity, exposure to chemicals, freezing or radiation
- Punctures of the skin, including those caused by compound fractures
While other surgeons and other specialists are fully capable of performing surgery to repair internal organs, bones, muscles, blood vessels, and other tissues, it is essential to have a plastic surgeon work on external tissue. This is because plastic surgeons are artists as well as medical professionals, with extensive training in the delicate procedures that reduce scarring and other visible evidence of prior injury.
Pediatric Plastic Surgery Is Complicated, Requiring Both Talent and Training
Dr. Cohen is experienced in both skin grafting and skin flap surgery:
Skin grafting is a surgical procedure in which healthy skin from another area of the body is removed and transplanted to the area of the wound. It is used when the injured area has lost skin due to cuts or burns. The new skin will be used to cover the wound to allow it to heal, while the area it was harvested from will heal as well. A graft is made of skin without its blood supply and will be nourished by blood vessels already existing in the wounded area.
Skin flap surgery, on the other hand, is performed to treat larger wounds that cannot be closed by skin grafting alone. The flaps of skin come from the tissue adjacent to the wound with their blood supply intact. Flaps use larger amounts of tissue, sometimes including muscle tissue. Some reconstructions need both a flap and a graft
In many cases, severe injuries require cooperation among doctors with different specialties. Pediatric plastic surgeons may, for example, work in tandem with orthopedic surgeons to repair the site of a compound fracture where a bone has come through the skin, creating a serious risk of infection in addition to possible disfigurement.
Besides facial injuries affecting chins, cheeks, noses, ears, and even eyelids or eyebrows, children often hurt their hands and fingers, as well as their lower limbs. In catastrophic cases, a child may have suffered the loss of a digit or limb. No matter how serious the loss of tissue, Dr. Cohen’s skill will lessen the visible negative impact.
When is revision pediatric plastic surgery needed?
A certain percentage of scars, depending on their size, shape, and/or location, may be more cosmetically intrusive than others; some may even thicken and interfere with ease of motion. If your child’s scar is excessively raised or depressed or differs too noticeably in color or texture from adjacent skin, Dr. Cohen may prescribe one of the following options: a topical treatment, a minimally invasive procedure, or a surgical revision to improve your child’s appearance and/or function. Two things should be noted:
- It is usual to wait at least a year for the scar to mature before having revision surgery.
- No matter how talented the pediatric plastic surgeon, the scar from a serious injury will not entirely disappear.
Whatever the particular circumstances, Dr. Cohen works hard to minimize disfigurement and restore as much function as possible to preserve your child’s physical and emotional health.
Types of Pediatric Plastic Surgery Revision
There are two kinds of revision surgery:
- Re-excision is used to remove widened, thickened, or depressed scar tissue by repairing it in layers to make it less visible. Sometimes Dr. Cohen will reorient the scar, making it vertical rather than horizontal, or vice versa. Frequently, this is accomplished by making a line of small zig-zags — a technique called W-plasty. This technique is also used to facilitate your child’s mobility by reducing tension and preventing tissue enlargement (hypertrophy).
- Excision and Replacement is sometimes required to improve appearance by using skin grafting. If the scarred area is extensive, Dr. Cohen may use split or full-thickness skin grafting or more complex methods if necessary.
Why Wise Parents Choose Dr. Brian D. Cohen
When choosing a plastic surgeon for your child, you need more than artistry and compassion. Children are not just miniature adults. Though they have great resilience, they also have fears and anxieties that they may be too young to verbalize. Dr. Cohen has a history of dealing with children on their terms and being sensitive to their unspoken concerns. When Dr. Brian D. Cohen treats your child, he provides superior skill administered with the gentle touch your child deserves. Contact our office today to schedule your first appointment.