There are many positive aspects of UCHealth Memorial Hospital Central’s recent level I trauma center designation. It means that critical life saving treatment is available here in southern Colorado when it’s needed. It also means highly trained and qualified medical professionals will be drawn to our city, like plastic surgeon Dr. Fred Deleyiannis who moved here recently.
“UCHealth is now the level one trauma center in Colorado Springs and that’s very unique and for a plastic surgeon interested in trauma and cancer reconstruction this really is a great place to be. I came down here mainly because the opportunity that presented itself.”
His move from Denver means that extremely complex and challenging reconstruction surgeries can be done in the Springs for people who have suffered a traumatic injury, or lost tissue because of cancer or a birth defect.
“We do microvascular surgery which is basically a transplant in your own body. Those techniques have been around for 20 or 30 years, but it’s the sort of thing that takes 20 or 30 years to get really good at. It’s a technique that uses microscopes, and blood vessels are sewn under the microscope and you transport that (needed) tissue to a different part of the body.”
The loss of tissue is something the body can often survive, but when that tissue is part of your face or a limb, making it whole again can help heal the human spirit.
“I think it’s really profound, you’re presented with people that are missing basically vital function from some soft tissue that has been removed, weather it’s from a cancer or a trauma. What we’re able to do as plastic surgeons is replace that tissue with other parts of the body, and we aim for really improving the quality of life.”
In our next story, we’ll tell you more about the work Dr. Deleyiannis does Including how he reconstructed a man’s face who was attacked by a Grizzly Bear.