New skin graft op is rev­o­lu­tion­ary

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS -

A WOMAN from Uxbridge was among the first peo­ple to ben­e­fit from a rev­o­lu­tion­ary skin graft­ing tech­nique that could re­duce the num­ber of pa­tients un­der­go­ing in­va­sive surgery.

When an alu­minium lad­der fell on Gil­lian Mayer’s leg she had no idea about the depth of the wound. Though painful, there was lit­tle blood so she cleaned it and put on a dress­ing.

But nearly three weeks later, the wound was not heal­ing. Dur­ing an ap­point­ment at the plas­tic surgery clinic at Mount Ver­non Hos­pi­tal in Rick­mansworth Road, North­wood, where Mrs Mayer is be­ing treated for skin can­cer, her doc­tor re­ferred her for pi­o­neer­ing Cel­luTome treat­ment at the Royal Free Hos­pi­tal in London.

A tra­di­tional skin graft in­volves sur­gi­cally re­mov­ing healthy skin from a donor site else­where on the body be­fore ap­ply­ing it to the af­fected area, usu­ally while the pa­tient is un­der gen­eral anaes­the­sia. But a Cel­luTome pro­ce­dure uses a com­bi­na­tion of suc­tion and warmth to re­move a sur­face of healthy skin be­fore ap­ply­ing it to the wound site and can be car­ried out in an out-pa­tient clinic in just an hour.

In­stead of a wound pa­tients are left with a patch of red skin which heals within two to four weeks. “I could only feel a slight pin prick­ing,” Mrs Mayer, 62, said. “The heat from the ma­chine was not un­com­fort­able at all.”

n TECH­NIQUE: Gil­lian Mayer from Uxbridge and her sur­gi­cal team at the Royal Free Hos­pi­tal after her pi­o­neer­ing Cel­luTome skin graft pro­ce­dure Con­trib­uted

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