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Treatment of wounds has been the cornerstone of plastic surgery since its inception. Vacuum-assisted closure provides a new paradigm that can be used in concert with a wide variety of standard existing plastic surgery techniques. It was originally developed as an alternative treatment for debilitated patients with chronic wounds. It has rapidly evolved into a widely accepted treatment of chronic and acute wounds, contaminated wounds, burns, envenomations, infiltrations, and wound complications from failed operations. The ease of technique and a high rate of success have encouraged its adaptation by thoracic, general, trauma, burn, orthopedic, urologic, as well as plastic surgeons. This article discusses multidisciplinary advances in the use of the vacuum-assisted closure technique over the past 10 years and its status as of 2006. Creative surgeons continue to regularly adapt the system to difficult problems. This technique in trained surgical hands greatly enhances the scope and safety of wound treatment.