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phone: 310-434-2495
1260 15th Street, Suite 1401
Santa Monica, CA 90404
phone: 818-990-9665
15503 Ventura Blvd., Suite 370
Encino, CA 91436

Reconstructive Surgery Santa Monica

Once a skin cancer has been removed the area needs to be reconstructed. There are a variety of methods for repairing these defects. Having performed over 15,000 reconstructive surgeries Dr Massey can help guide you as to what form of reconstruction is best suited for you. See examples of various reconstructions performed by Dr Massey below.


This involves closing the defect as a thin straight line of sutures. The positioning of this line, undermining to release tissue from the wound and placement of internal as well as external sutures are all important factors in how it will heal and the final cosmetic result.


With local flaps, releasing cuts are made in the surrounding skin to allow the skin to be pulled over the wound, rather like closing a curtain. (As this uses local skin the flap will usually blend into the surrounding skin better than a graft will).


Sometimes skin immediately adjacent to the wound can not be used, and a more distant flap is used. In the first phase, skin is recruited from a donor area and sutured into the defect while it is still attached to its original blood supply. This is a temporary phase lasting two or three weeks. After a few weeks enough new blood vessels have grown into the flap from the surrounding tissue that it no longer needs the connection to its original blood supply. So in the second phase of this surgery the bridge of skin connecting the flap to its site of origin is removed and the flap is now fully in place. While this is a complex and lengthy process to go through, for certain defects it will give the best cosmetic results.


When flaps are not a good option grafts can often be used. Here skin a removed from a relatively hidden location, such as behind the ear, and sutured over the defect, (rather like a patch on hole in your pants!). Over the next few days new blood vessels grow into the graft and so keep it alive. The final cosmetic results can be excellent, but because the graft is from a more distant location and has no blood supply of its own, the results are a little less predictable.

The best method of reconstruction will depend upon several factors including;

  • Size of the defect, (small defects can usually be repaired in a simpler fashion than larger ones).
  • Location, (the reconstructive choices may be different for a lesion on the tip of the nose as apposed to the lower leg for example).
  • The amount of mobility in the surrounding skin, (in general the more laxity in the surrounding skin the easier it is to repair a defect).
  • Other local structures, (the need to avoid pulling down on the eyelid when repairing a defect on the cheek for example may direct your reconstructive options).
  • Patient preferences, (some patients may prefer a quicker simpler repair rather than a more involved reconstruction that might otherwise give a better overall cosmetic result).

Having performed over 15,000 reconstructive surgeries Dr Massey can help guide you as to what form of reconstruction is best suited for you.

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Featured Procedure


Loose extra skin on the upper eyelids or bags and wrinkles of the lower lids can make you look tired and add years to your appearance. This can be corrected with a safe cosmetic surgery called blepharoplasty. This surgery can rejuvenate your eyes and take away that sleepy, tired look. Dr. Massey has perfected an “electrode blepharoplasty” that can be performed under the safety of local anesthesia, with practically no down time. The procedure take about 45 minutes and patients can usually be back to full activity after one week.

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Featured Procedure


With time the effects of gravity can show themselves as loose extra skin on the cheeks and jowls. These can add years to your appearance. The old fashioned type of face-lift required general anesthetic, many weeks of down time and often left patients looking “unnatural” with their skin pulled much too tight. With the new “Lipo-Lift” Dr. Massey has integrated a new, less invasive face-lift procedure with the tissue contraction gained from micro-liposuction and the benefits of tumescent anesthesia, to produce amazing results. As soon as ten days later, patients don’t look like they have just had surgery, they just look better!

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Featured Procedure


Until recently, procedures for body contouring through fat removal involved extensive operations. These resulted in large scars and significant safety risks. Several years ago, dermatologists developed tumescent liposuction. This allows fat removal through tiny incisions that do not leave significantly visible scars. A large volume of extremely dilute local anesthetic is infiltrated into the area to be treated. Then utilizing straw like, extremely thin metal tubes (cannulas) and a high-pressure suction system, the fat cells are extracted through tiny incisions.

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Featured Procedure

Brow Lift

A heavy, drooping forehead and eyebrows (rather than just eyelids) can give a sleepy, tired look. Many of these patients are mistakenly treated with a blepharoplasty alone, which takes extra skin from the upper eyelids, still leaving them with their flat, “heavy” eyebrows shadowing their eyes. If these patients are correctly diagnosed preoperatively, they can get a much better cosmetic result from a brow lift, either alone or in combination with blepharoplasty. This is the type of careful analysis and deeper knowledge that allows Dr Massey to guide patients towards the best procedure for them.

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