Surgical principles: Experts to explain tips for many basic procedures

Key Surgical Principles We All Should Know (S008)

Learn the intricacies of cutaneous surgery or get an update on procedures you can do in your office by attending “Key Surgical Principles We All Should Know.” The symposium will cover anatomy, which antibiotics to use, painless procedures, and tips for suture techniques, skin grafts, and basic flaps.

“The session is focused on going over the basics of skin surgery, and this includes surgery for skin cancer or for benign conditions like cysts or lipomas,” said session director Sarah T. Arron, MD, PhD. “We have a panel of excellent surgeons who will be speaking to the general dermatologists who might do some excisions in their practices or residents who are interested in surgery or want to incorporate more surgical procedures into their training.

“This is very basic, very practical, and designed around things that dermatologists do every day.”

The symposium is designed to be a visual teaching course, featuring slides, photos, and detailed explanations of the best approaches for several procedures, with ample time for the experts to answer questions from the audience.

“There are a lot of diagrams of anatomy and different types of flaps and grafts that surgeons might do,” said Dr. Arron, an associate professor of dermatology at the University of California, San Francisco. “For many people, this will be an opportunity to ask surgeons about how they deal with getting into a difficult situation, getting out of a difficult situation, or avoiding a situation like that.

“I encourage people to come to the whole session because there is a lot of information that integrates between different topics. For example, learning how to put in a good deep suture makes executing some of the flaps much simpler.”

Primary facial anatomy, with a focus on major nerves of sensation and motor function, will be discussed, as well as areas that can have bleeding complications.

A second presentation will look at guidelines for preoperative antibiotic prophylaxis — primarily for endocarditis and prevention of orthopedic joint infection. Also discussed will be which patients should be given antibiotics and what type should be used to prevent an infection after a surgical procedure.

“Tips and Tricks for Painless Surgery” will explore local and regional anesthesia, and the use of distractor techniques to make patients more comfortable.

Planning for procedures will be featured, with a focus on how to use sutures to make a skin approximation and improve cosmetic outcomes.

“Successful Skin Grafts” will be a foundational talk about designing, harvesting, and placing skin grafts, and how to improve the outcomes post-operatively.

Finally, the basics of design of advanced rotation and transposition flaps will be shared. The emphasis will be on tissue movement and the design of tension vectors.

Dr. Arron will make the final presentation, pulling together information from earlier presentations to assess how best to avoid complications and how to handle complications such as infections, bleeding, and nerve damage.

“This is a comprehensive session that is appropriate for anybody who is interested in getting a little more experience, or reviewing some of the things they already do in their practices,” Dr. Arron said. “All of the speakers have worked on ways to put in their own pearls or teaching tricks that can illuminate some of these topics. I learn something new every time we have this session, and I think the audience will as well.”

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