​​​​Division of Plastic Reconstructive Surgery


This course has been postponed to 2023.

More information:
Sizwekazi Zantsi
Division of Plastic Surgery :
Tel : +27 21 938 9585
E-mail: sizwekazi@sun.ac.za    

Microsurgery is a term referring to surgery requiring an operating microscope or high-powered loupe magnification to aid in the techniques of microvascular surgery.  Microsurgical techniques are applied to dissect small structures and to anastomose small vessels and nerves.  Microsurgical reconstruction is used for complex reconstructive surgery problems when other options are not adequate or do not deliver satisfactory results.  Free tissue transfer is a reconstructive procedure using microsurgery.  In our plastic surgery division we apply free tissue transfer in many clinical settings and on a regular basis.  We utilise microsurgical techniques in:

  • Breast reconstruction
  • Head and Neck cancer reconstruction
  • Handsurgery
  • Lower extremity reconstruction
  • Facial reanimation surgery
  • Male and female genital reconstruction

Although microsurgical techniques are mainly used in plastic surgery, they are utilised by most surgical specialties today.  We have a long tradition of microsurgery at our plastic surgery division and have offered microsurgery courses for interested practitioners since free tissue transfer is performed at Tygerberg Hospital.  We offer several microsurgery courses in our microsurgery laboratory.  We offer a Basic Microsurgical Skill Course on a regular basis.  We will be hosting a Free Flap Course in the near future on a regular basis.  This course will be divided into microsurgical skill training in the lab, flap dissections on cadavers and live surgery cases.  The microsurgery laboratory also provides the following workshops in specialized procedures and techniques on application, using laboratory rats and mice:

- Heart transplant (rats)
- Kidney transplant (rats)
- Nephrectomy (rats and Mice)
- Partial Hepatectomy (rats and mice)
- Sub cutanious Inplantation of constant infusion pumps (rats and mice)
- other specialised procedures on behalf of Departments  and/or Researchers on request

Microsurgery Course Programme

The Division of Plastic and Reconstructive surgery is offering 3-day training courses (Mondays to Wednesdays) in the Basic Skills of Microsurgery.

If extra skills are required, we also offer a fourth day (Thursday).


  • Welcoming, registration
  • Video presentation
  • Microscope  setting and hand to eye co-ordination
  • Practice suturing and tying of knots on surgical clove followed by end-end suturing on rat cadaver aorta (2mm diam.)


  • Suturing of rat aorta on live rats end-end
  • Dissecting and suturing of rat femoral artery (1mm. in diameter) end-end


  • Suturing of rat femoral arteries and veins
  • Sciatic nerve repair ( 2mm. diameter) in rat
  • Hand out of certificates to successful candidates


  • For those candidates that want to continue after successfully completed the 3 day course
  • Suturing of rat femoral artery to femoral vein (AV fistula)
  • Suturing of interpositional  femoral arterial graft 3-4 mm. in length