What is Mohs Surgery?
posted: Dec. 15, 2021.
Find out why this is often the most effective surgery for removing skin cancer.
According to the American Academy of Dermatologists, about one in five Americans will develop some form of skin cancer during their lifetime. While skin cancer might not get the same media attention as other forms of cancer, skin cancer is one of the most common types of cancer. If you’ve been diagnosed with skin cancer then our Delray Beach, Boca Raton & West Boca, FL, dermatologists Dr. Benjamin Bohaty and Dr. Lawrence Enisman might have recommended Mohs surgery to remove the cancerous growth. Find out more about Mohs surgery and how it can save your life.
What is Mohs surgery?
The main goal of Mohs surgery is to target and remove as much skin cancer as possible while reducing the amount of damage caused to nearby healthy tissue. Our Delray Beach, Boca Raton, & West Boca, FL, dermatologists might recommend getting Mohs surgery if you are dealing with basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, or melanoma. Mohs surgery is often the best course of action against skin cancer that is more likely to return even after treatment, are aggressive or big, or are in spots where it’s important to preserve as much healthy tissue as possible such as around the eyes or ears.
What should I expect during my Mohs surgery?
This surgery is performed under local anesthesia as an outpatient procedure, so you will be able to go home immediately after. The procedure can take up to four hours depending on how large the skin cancer is and where it is located. First, our dermatologists will inject the areas with a local anesthetic to fully numb them. Once the area is completely numb we will use a scalpel to carefully remove the cancerous growth, along with a small portion of neighboring healthy tissue. After the skin cancer has been removed we will place a bandage over it.
This tissue sample is then sent to a laboratory to be analyzed. If there is any cancer still there after the first removal, we will need to go back and remove another layer of cancerous tissue. Then we will send this sample to the lab for further examination. This same process will be repeated until all cancer has been removed.
Depending on how deep the incision is, you may opt to just have it heal on its own or we may need to close it up with stitches. If the cancer is large enough we may even need to consider skin grafting and other reconstructive techniques.
What makes Mohs surgery a great treatment option for those with skin cancer is that you can get your results right away. Furthermore, you won’t leave our office until you are cancer-free. While you will still need to come back for follow-ups, this is one of the most effective ways to treat skin cancer.
If you are noticing a suspicious growth or changing mole, then it’s time to come in for a checkup. Our dermatologists offer comprehensive skincare treatment including Mohs surgery in Delray Beach, Boca Raton & West Boca, FL. To schedule an appointment, call Feinstein Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery at (561) 498-4407.