Simulation and optimization of reconstructive surgery procedures on human skin

A. Spagnoli*, R. Alberini, E. Raposio, Michele Terzano

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The complex procedures involved in the reconstructive surgery of human skin to minimize post-operative scarring are here modeled by means of an automated computational tool. A finite strain no-compression membrane model accounting for the tendency to develop wrinkling regions in the skin is presented. The constitutive behavior of the material is then described by a suitable hyperelastic incompressible potential. Transpositions of skin flaps during surgery procedures are here computationally described by a general mapping technique of the internal boundary corresponding to surgery cut. The archetypal reconstructive surgery of a Z-plasty, where a rotational transposition of the resulting triangular flaps is involved, is considered in details, along with multiple Z-plasty and rhombic flap transposition. The results are discussed in terms of optimal deformation parameters, related to stress/strain localization, displacement discontinuities and wrinkling.
Original languageEnglish
Article number105215
JournalJournal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2022


  • Hyperelastic membrane
  • Reconstructive surgery
  • Rhombic flap transposition
  • Skin mechanics
  • Z-plasty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Biomaterials

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