first microvascular free tissue transfer was performed here in the BVI at the
Bougainvillea Clinic during the recently held Plastic Surgery Workshop. Pictured here are
Drs. Coville, Guelinckx and Sinsel during the operation
First Microvascular Free
Tissue Transfer performed in BVI at Bougainvillea Clinic
The very first microvascular free tissue transfer was performed here in the BVI at the
Bougainvillea Clinic during the recently held Plastic Surgery Workshop. Dr. Fred Coville
of the Bougainvillea Clinic enlisted the help and guidance of world-renowned microsurgeon
Dr. Paul Guelinckx and his assistant Dr. Nadia Sinsel to perform this very complicated and
The operation includes taking of muscle with its
artery and vein that supplies it, from its normal anatomic location and transferring it to
a distant part of the body. To keep the muscle alive it must be connected to the new
locations arteries and veins. This is all done microscopically Dr. Coville said.
This is a very tricky procedure and things
can go wrong, he pointed out.
These free tissue transfers are used for various types of reconstructive surgery. In some
cases it can prevent an amputation, as was this case. Other times it may be used to bring
in bone, nerves and even to fashion a new breast after mastectomy.
Although I do a large amount of microsurgery
here at the Bougainvillea Clinic and have done many free flaps back in the USA, I reserve
my microsurgery to emergency cases such as finger amputations, Dr. Coville told The
He noted that Drs. Guelinckx and Sinsel helped
him on a very difficult case and saved the foot of a Virgin Gorda patient from possible
amputation. I have not done any elective microsurgery cases because you need a very
experienced team such as the visiting Doctors Guelinckx and Sinsel .
We are very fortunate to have forged many professional relationships with doctors
around the world.
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