Physicians now have evidence-based recommendations for when skin cancer leaves a patient in need of reconstructive surgery. UConn Health’s chief of plastic surgery, Dr. Andrew Chen, led a national brain trust to come up with them.
Some of the brightest minds in dermatology and surgery are in agreement on the first clinical practice guidelines for reconstructive procedures following skin cancer resection.
Dr. Andrew Chen, UConn Health’s chief of plastic surgery, is the lead author of the guidelines, published concurrently in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, a journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, Dermatologic Surgery, and the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.
Chen was chosen to lead a group of stakeholders including dermatologists, plastic and reconstructive surgeons, dermatologic and Mohs surgeons, head and neck, and ear, nose and throat surgeons, and others, including patient representatives, to analyze the evidence and make recommendations to guide physicians as they care for patients who need reconstructive surgery after having cancerous skin removed.
“We studied the evidence to make determinations on antibiotics, what are the recommendations with respect to pain control, the use of anticoagulants, as well as the timing of reconstruction,” Chen says. “What are the best practices? What kind of things should we be doing or should we not be doing?”