Reconstructive Surgery After Trauma: Improving Patient Outcomes and Building the Evidence Base

In his talk, Justin Wormald explores how reconstructive surgery can help patients after trauma. Outlining the pioneering work of McIndoe and Gillies in the early 20th century, he then highlights his own expertise in hand injury surgery. As one of the most common injuries in the UK, hand trauma often highlights the taken-for-granted nature of healthy hand functioning. However, despite the frequency of this injury, there are two challenges facing this field. Firstly, there is a tendency for operated hand wounds to become infected after surgery, which is known as a surgical site infection. Secondly, there is a paucity of research assessing the means of preventing such infections. Therefore, Justin Wormald contextualises his own research, aiming to understand why patients get infected and how this can be prevented. In doing so he advocates the need to build an evidence base for reconstructive surgery, improving outcomes for patients by having less research, but better research.  

Justin Wormald

Justin Wormald is an NIHR Doctoral Research Fellow and DPhil candidate in Musculoskeletal Sciences.  His research focuses on understanding and preventing surgical site infection following surgery for hand and wrist injuries. Hand trauma is common and can be severely debilitating for a large number of people in the UK. Hand and wrist injuries account for about 1 in 5 A&E attendances, culminating in around 5 million injuries per year in the UK. We know very little about infection in this group and there are few clinical trials of interventions to prevent infection after hand trauma surgery. You can read more about Justin Wormald and his research here.

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