Meet the speaker: Plastic surgery – its role in foot reconstruction

The concept of soft tissue reconstruction and its potential role in diabetic foot salvage will be explored at the free, online EDFN National Conference on April 26th.

Mr James Chan, Consultant in Reconstructive Plastic Surgery, will deliver the session, ‘Plastic surgery – its role in foot reconstruction’.

Speaking ahead of the conference, Mr Chan said: “Diabetic foot disease represents one of the most challenging modern reconstructive problems. It is associated with poor wound healing, peripheral vascular disease, immunosuppression and deep infection.

“Limb preservation likely improves quality of life and perhaps even life expectancy. However, the lack of soft tissue coverage is often a limiting factor and an indication for proximal amputations. There has been increasing interest in using plastic surgery techniques to reconstruct these defects. At present, this is not routinely offered in most healthcare facilities.

“This talk introduces the concept of soft tissue reconstruction and its potential role in diabetic foot salvage.”

Delegates hearing from Mr Chan’s session can expect to:

  • Gain an understanding of the aims of soft tissue reconstruction in diabetic foot;
  • Develop an awareness of the different types of soft tissue reconstructive techniques;
  • Learn how to identify suitable candidates for soft tissue reconstruction.

Mr Chan said as a reconstructive plastic surgeon, his main drive is to help restore maximum function in people with musculoskeletal problems.

He said some of the most neglected people are those living with diabetic foot disease, but members of the diabetic foot MDT can transform lives by being proactive and enabling patients to get back up on their feet again.

He added: “I also believe there are many patients in whom it would be possible to preserve limbs if only we can offer soft tissue reconstruction which is not routinely offered in most healthcare centres at present. To this end, I founded and now lead the Special Interest and Advisory Group on Diabetic Foot Reconstruction for the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons.”

Mr Chan is based at Stoke Mandeville, Wycombe General and Amersham Hospitals in Buckinghamshire and he holds a Lectureship at Oxford University.

Mr Chan graduated from Cambridge University and completed a Doctorate of Philosophy at Oxford University as Senior Scholar of Lincoln College. Subsequently, he completed his higher surgical training within the Oxford region and underwent specialist microsurgery training in Taiwan which has allowed him to develop the techniques to perform limb salvage reconstructive surgery for diabetic foot disease.

Register here for the free online EDFN national conference.

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