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Lucknow as a major centre for craniofacial surgery in north India

The Times of India | 2009-08-26

Plastic and reconstructive surgery is not just about corrective skin and tissue-related deformities. One of its latest branches, craniofacial surgery, has gone to the level of re-contouring and re-construction of skull, face and jaws. But dealing with congenital and acquired deformities of skull is much more complicated and difficult than liposuction, removing wrinkles, earlobe re-construction and for that matter breast enhancement and penile reconstruction.

In fact, craniofacial treatment involves equal participation of neurosurgery and plastic surgery apart from dental surgery and expert post-operative care. A craniofacial surgeon deal with bone, skin, muscle and teeth, etc. The best part is that Lucknow is the only place in north India after PGI Chandigarh and Delhi to have expertise and facilities for craniofacial surgery. Today, the city is not only catering to domestic needs of the state and the country but now patients are also coming from neighbouring countries, providing an opportunity to the state government to develop and market it for medical tourism.

Craniofacial surgery deals with abnormal shape of the head, shortening of the lower jaw bone, depressed cheek bones, deformities of the forehead, increased distance between the eyes leading to a grotesque appearance of the face and facial asymmetry among other things. The problem can be both since birth and accidents. Another cause of deformity could be tumours and infections leading to necrosis of skin or bone. On an average 10-15 patients having craniofacial problem report per week in the department of plastic surgery, Chhatrapati Shahuji Maharaj Medical University (CSMMU), only place with expertise in government sector.

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