|Oculoplastic has a
long history. Sushruta in India described the techniques of
pedicle flap which is still commonly used in the reconstruction of eyelid
defect (the glabellar flap for large medial canthal defect). This technique
was used extensively in ancient India where cutting off of the nose was
one of the common modes of punishment for adultery.
The technique as described by Sushruta was as followed: "When a man's nose has been cut off or destroyed, the physician takes the leaf of a plant which is the size of the destroyed parts. He places it on the patient's cheek and cuts out of this cheek a piece of skin of the same size (but in such a manner that the skin at one end remains attached to the cheek). Then he freshens with his scalpel the edges of the stump of the nose and wraps the piece of skin from the cheek carefully all around it, and sews it at the edges. Then he places two thin pipes in the nose where the nostrils should go, to facilitate breathing and to prevent the sewn skin from collapsing. There after he strews powder of sapan wood, licorice-root and barberry on it and covers with cotton. As soon as the skin has grown together with the nose, he cuts through the connection with the cheek" (see pictures above)
The modern plastic surgery we use today was learned by the British while they worked for the East India Company. Although the pedicle flap was developed over 2,000 years ago, it is the same procedure that the British learned.
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