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UMass Wound Research Synopsis

University of Massachusetts Memorial Health Care is the largest not-for-profit health care system in the central Massachusetts region, with 1,500 physicians and over 10,000 employees. 

Our comprehensive network, including the University of Massachusetts Memorial Wound Center, features teaching hospitals, affiliated community hospitals, outpatient clinics, community-based physician practices, long-term care facilities, home health hospice, and rehabilitation and mental health services. UMass Memorial is dedicated to promoting health and wellness in the community, and celebrates its role as the clinical partner of the University of Massachusetts Medical School. 

Conditions treated at the Wound Center are caused by a number of factors that include diabetes, cancer, trauma and non-trauma injuries, vascular disorders and burns. The Wound Center is also the site for post-surgery follow-up care. We have a multi-disciplinary team consisting of plastic surgeons, physician’s assistants, wound care specialists and registered nurses that specialize in vascular surgery, orthopedics, podiatry, nutrition, physical therapy and orthotics.  

The Wound Center treats approximately 4000 patients per year ranging from adolescents to the elderly. The target population are patients seeking treatments for decubitus ulcers, venous ulcers, leg ulcers, bone infections, diabetic ulcers, burn care, scar management, complex surgical wounds and traumatic wounds, as well as slow healing and chronic wounds with or without lymphadema. 

Patients who choose the Wound Center benefit from direct access to a leading medical environment staffed by the finest specialists in many surgical and related health care disciplines.  

The Division of Plastic Surgery

Faculty in the Division of Plastic Surgery have been conducting animal and clinical research for more than 25 years. We have been involved in drug and device clinical trials focusing on novel dressings for chronic wounds, sternal closure plates following open heart surgery, implantable biomaterial for reconstructive surgery, etc. We also are fully capable of conducting pre-clinical animal studies and basic science research related to wound healing

Areas of Research Interest and Expertise

  • Chronic non-healing wounds
  • Burns
  • Skin graft / donor sites
  • Scar Revision
  • Growth Factors
  • Cytokines

Profile of the Organization

Faculty Members of the Division of Plastic Surgery and the UMass Memorial Wound Center actively engaged in wound research include: 

Raymond M. Dunn, MD – Dr. Dunn has served as the Chief of Plastic Surgery since 1998 and is the director of the UMass Memorial Wound Center. Dr. Dunn graduated from Albany Medical College in 1982 and is board certified with the national Board of Medical Examiners, American Board of Surgery, and the American Board of Plastic Surgery, including added qualifications in hand surgery. Dr. Dunn has been licensed in Massachusetts since 1986 and was named as one of “America’s Top Surgeons” in 2002.  

Dr. Dunn currently serves on nine different committees with UMass and Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors in 1978. Dr. Dunn’s residency training was at Eastern Virginia Medical School and at UMass Memorial Medical Center. His clinical interests include microsurgery, wound surgery, hand and upper extremity surgery, Plastic Surgery and Cosmetic Surgery. Dr. Dunn is a full Professor at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. 

Dr. Dunn holds two patents: #5,449,374: Tissue Spreading Forceps, issued September 12, 1995 and #5,766,432: Method and Device for Eliminating pH Electrode Drift, issuedJune 16, 1998.

Mustafa Akyurek, MD – Dr. Akyurek graduated from Hacettepe University Medical School, Ankara, Turkey, in 1990 and finished a Plastic Surgery residency in the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the same university in 2000. He is a diplomate of American College of Surgeons and certified by the Turkish Board of Plastic Surgery.His clinical interests include breast reconstruction, reconstructive microsurgery, aesthetic breast surgery, and rhinoplasty. His research interests include anatomic studies in perforator flaps, development of new flap designs, especially for breast reconstruction and autologous tissue breast augmentation. Dr. Akyurek is an associate professor of surgery at UMass Medical School and Director of Microsurgery.

Janice F. Lalikos, MD – Dr. Lalikos graduated from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine with an M.D. and a Master’s in Medical Illustration. She did a full general surgery residency training at Vanderbilt University Hospital and was boarded by the American Board of Surgery and is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. Her plastic surgery residency was completed at UMass Memorial Medical Center, and a craniofacial fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh - Presbyterian Medical Center. She is boarded by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and is an ABPS Board Examiner. Dr. Lalikos’ clinical interests include pediatric plastic surgery, wound care, and tissue engineering. Her curriculum vitae acknowledge 50+ peer reviewed publications, 12 grants and 1 patent. Dr. Lalikos is Professor, Residency Program Director and Section Chief, Pediatric Plastic Surgery at the UMass Medical School. 

Heather M. Strom Tessier, MA – Mrs. Tessier is the Division’s Research Lab Manager and main Research Associate. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Mount Holyoke College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Biological Sciences in 2000. She received her Master’s Degree in Environmental Science and Policy from Clark University in 2011.  Her major duties include: coordinating all aspects of the lab/research projects, regulatory compliance, grant writing, budgeting and financial management, obtaining informed consent from research subjects, maintaining research records, retrieving, cataloging and processing samples, data analysis, and manuscript and IRB/IACUC protocol preparation.

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