Last September, I took a trip to Taiwan for a few weeks for two main reasons 1) it's the birthplace of modern day microsurgery 2) vacation (of course!). Most trips I take are usually a two-fer of this kind, what can I say I am an explorer.
Wound care is an integral part of my training and practice. There are many techniques utilized to heal or obtain wound coverage, from simple to advanced techniques including: use of the patient's own skin as a graft, synthetic products, soft tissue advancement (using the patient's own muscle and/or skin moving it from an adjacent location) and lastly a free flap (taking the patient's muscle and/or skin from a distant location).
Having worked with microsurgeons throughout my training, I became fascinated by wound care using plastic surgery techniques. To expand my armamentarium in my metaphorical bag of How Do I Get This Wound to Heal Faster, I went to the one place where microsurgery was pioneered, at Chang Gung Memorial Hospital in Taiwan.
There are a few but growing number of podiatrists performing microsurgery. Imagine hunting for a blood vessel that is 1-2 mm in diameter hiding in between muscle, fat and fascia. Additional training is always necessary and tagging along the pioneer of microsurgery, Professor Fu-Chan Wei, was why I was in Taiwan.