A skin graft is a surgical procedure in which a piece of skin is transplanted from one area to another. Often skin will be taken from unaffected areas on the injured person and used to cover a defect, often a burn. If the area of the skin defect is especially large, the harvested skin may be meshed to stretch it into a larger patch. If the defect involves a great loss of tissue, a full thickness graft, a flap of skin with underlying muscle and blood vessels, may be required. Taking the graft from the injured person makes rejection of the tissue unlikely.
Reviewed By: Debra G. Wechter, MD, FACS, general surgery practice specializing in breast cancer, Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.