Department of Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
The Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Sheba Medical Center was founded in 1953 and is dedicated to the surgical repair of congenital deformities, post-surgical reconstruction, correction of post-traumatic defects, and cosmetic surgery. Our specially trained team offers comprehensive consultations, inpatient and outpatient procedures, and post-operative follow-up for a wide range of treatments. We treat approximately 7,000 inpatients and more than 9,000 outpatients each year. We also conduct extensive medical research in areas such as scar formation and control, burns and wound healing, and tissue engineering, often in collaboration with other hospitals in Israel and internationally.
The Division of Surgery at the Acute Care Hospital
The Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery is part of Sheba Medical Center’s Division of Surgery – a state-of-the-art unit that employs cutting-edge technologies and techniques, serving all patients with professional excellence and a compassionate manner.
At Sheba’s Division of Surgery:
- Our team consists of more than 250 surgeons and 500 nurses
- We have a total of 33 advanced operating rooms
- We perform approximately 23,500 procedures per year
- We provide treatment for 23,000 inpatients per year
- We care for 350,000 outpatients per year
The following departments are all housed within the Division of Surgery:
Specialty Clinics & Services
Our department comprises a variety of advanced specialty clinics that focus on specific types of plastic and reconstructive surgery, including:
Breast Reconstruction Unit
We are qualified and experienced in a range of modern surgical techniques, all of which share a common goal of achieving maximal breast symmetry. The particular reconstructive method will be chosen according to the patient’s functional and aesthetic needs, such as:
- Partial or total breast reconstruction (post lumpectomy or mastectomy)
- Immediate or delayed reconstruction
- Unilateral or bilateral breast reconstruction
- Post skin-sparing mastectomy and immediate breast reconstruction
- Bilateral reconstruction
- Post-prophylactic mastectomy
Reconstruction can be done with a silicone implant or by using autologous tissues (the patient’s tissues). Our surgeons excel in the most advanced techniques of microsurgery for breast reconstruction, including Deep Inferior Epigastric Perforator (DIEP), which uses tissue from the abdominal wall without damaging abdominal muscles. Alternatively, the microsurgical technique is sometimes done using buttock tissue, skin and/or back muscle combined with insertion of a silicon prosthesis.
This clinic serves as the National Referral Unit for treatment of burns in Israel. It is a first-level burn center, equipped to provide respiratory and intensive care treatments. We have nine patient beds, three of which are designed for treatment of ventilated patients under full intensive care. A multidisciplinary team, including plastic surgeons, specially qualified nurses, clinical psychologist, physiotherapists, and social workers collaborate to design effective treatments and rehabilitation. We also work in close cooperation with the microsurgery unit for complex reconstructions.
A burn injury affects the skin immediately, but quickly becomes systemic and often affects the kidneys, cardiovascular, and respiratory system. When a patient has a large burn surface, the hospitalization period can be very long. Our unit is designed to offer a comfortable atmosphere for patients and their families during this time.
Congenital Malformation Team
We use progressive surgical techniques to treat malformations. Our multidisciplinary approach helps to achieve exceptional reconstructions that enable each patient to live a normal life. Additionally, we provide comprehensive follow-up. Conditions we treat:
- Cleft Lip and Palate
A staff of plastic surgeons, maxillofacial surgeons, ortognatica specialists, a pediatrician, a communication clinician, social workers, and a psychologist work together to provide thorough care for each child from birth through different developmental stages and surgery. Often, several reconstructions are performed up until the child reaches maturity.
Microtia surgery addresses both deformities of the external ear and inner ear canal deficiencies. In general, it is performed at the age of 6-8 years old, when the ear reaches 85% of its final dimensions, and the cartilage is large enough to provide reconstruction material. We have a team of specialists who perform microtia surgery and provide long-term follow-up.
- Vascular Malformations
Our Sheba team includes prominent leaders in the field who are associated with the National Laser Center, as well as imaging-interventional physicians who perform embolization of the malformation. We treat patients of all ages, from birth to adulthood, with a total range of laser treatments.
The Melanoma Clinic of the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery takes a multidisciplinary approach to the diagnosis and treatment of this dangerous disease. Our team is composed of plastic surgeons, dermatologists, oncologists, general surgeons, social workers, psychologists and other specialists, as required. Every case of melanoma is unique, and we personalize each treatment program.
Our Microsurgery Unit was established in 1990, and became the National Microsurgery Unit of the Israeli Ministry of Health. At this advanced center, Sheba surgeons perform a wide range of procedures, including elective surgery and emergency operations, such as:
- Replantation of accidentally severed body parts
- Treatment of injuries to peripheral nerves
- Free tissue transfer procedures to cover extensive wounds
- Emergency treatments for extensive wounds sustained in accidents or war
- Reconstructive surgery for congenital defects, oncological resection, or trauma
- Toe-to-hand transfers
- Reconstruction of facial, maxillary or mandibular defects
- Post facial nerve palsy reconstructions
- Breast reconstructions
- Complex reconstruction of extremities
Mohs Micrographic Unit
Mohs micrographic surgery is an advanced treatment for skin cancer that offers a high cure rate, even if the skin cancer has been treated unsuccessfully in the past. The physician functions as the surgeon, pathologist, and reconstructive surgeon. This procedure relies upon microscopic accuracy to trace and remove skin cancer down to its roots, decreasing the chances of regrowth. In addition, minimal damage to healthy tissue and minimal scarring or disfigurement are caused.
Mohs micrographic surgery is typically used to treat basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma.This unit is the first surgical center of its kind in Israel and the entire Middle East. Since its establishment in 1989, we have performed thousands of successful operations.
National Laser Center
Recognized as one of the most advanced laser clinics in the world, this unit is located at the Advanced Technologies Center at Sheba. We provide state-of-the-art clinical laser therapy for the treatment of:
The particular type of laser therapy used for treatment is determined based on medical indications and the kind of skin lesions. We also offer photodynamic therapy, a non-cutting method of treating skin cancer with a combination of light illumination and photoactive agents.
Life expectancy has increased in recent years, but the wound healing process in older patients is not always efficient. At our Wound Clinic, we commonly treat elderly people with pressure ulcers, diabetic feet, peripheral vascular disease wounds, and post-operative wound infections.
We offer macrophage technology to heal wounds, which leads to a shorter recovery period, reduces morbidity and mortality, and prevents the need for repeat operations. By isolating macrophages (a subgroup of white blood cells) from young and healthy donors, we can inject these cells into the wound – where they encourage the growth of granulation tissue and trigger the wound healing process.
Wound Healing Center
In 2000, this multidisciplinary center to treat chronic wounds was founded in collaboration with the Department of Plastic Surgery and the Rehabilitation Center. Our staff includes plastic surgeons, rehabilitation medical staff, specialized nurses, a dietitian, and physiotherapists. A variety of modern devices are used, including vacuum systems and laser therapy, as well as new drugs or biological treatments based on macrophages.
- Pressure sores
- Venous and arterial insufficiency
- Chronic wounds
- Diabetic wounds
- Post-traumatic wounds
Josef Haik, MD, MPH
Active Director, Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
Director, The Burn Center
Prof. Haik is a graduate of the University of Bologna, Italy. He completed his fellow training at the world-famous Firefighters Burn and Intensive Care Unit at the Alberta University Hospital in Edmonton, Canada. Prof. Haik also participated in Sheba Medical Center’s elite Talpiot Program for outstanding young scientists-physicians. He has published approximately 100 articles in international scientific medical journals.
Our Holistic Approach to Healing
At Sheba, we firmly believe that a criterion for the success of your plastic or reconstructive surgery is the improvement of your quality of life. To optimize your physical and psychological wellness, we provide personalized consultations before and after surgery. When our experts perform each operation, we custom-tailor it to address your medical, functional, and aesthetic requirements.. An array of supportive services is also available conveniently on our campus, such as social workers, nutritionists, psychologists, practitioners of complementary medicine, and rehabilitation therapists.