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Reconstructive surgery is a type of plastic surgery performed to reshape abnormal structures of the body to improve function and appearance. Reconstructive surgery, an important part of plastic surgery, is concerned with restoring back form and function to body parts. Tissue defects and distortions, either present from birth or acquired later due to injury, disease or surgery can be corrected by reconstructive techniques. Reconstructive surgeons are also skilled in solving certain difficult problems in other specialties brought about by poor healing or tissue deficiencies.

The operative word here is ‘abnormal’. Correction of grossly abnormal appearance is still considered reconstructive surgery even if there was no functional problem associated with it. In contrast, cosmetic plastic surgery aims to enhance the appearance of a normal person by improving specific areas which the individual wants improved. The goal of treatment here is different, although the techniques may not be very different. Thus adequately trained plastic surgeons may perform both types of surgery while some surgeons may restrict their practice to one or the other.

In a very broad sense however, reconstructive surgery is carried out by many different surgical specialists in their respective areas of work from time to time; an example would be an orthopedic surgeon doing some form of joint reconstruction for arthritis. However, only plastic surgeons train extensively in reconstruction of problems anywhere in the body; it forms their core curriculum. Plastic surgeons are trained to think and plan differently. Reconstructive techniques do not form the core strength of other surgical specialities.

Let us look at the various common areas where reconstructive surgeons contribute to the wellbeing of the society. As Dr. Mohan Rangaswamy’s practice also involves hand surgery and certain vascular access procedures, these sections have also been included under Reconstructive surgery.