Mohs Micrographic Surgery
Mohs surgery is a highly precise and effective procedure to treat skin cancers of the face and other critical locations. This form of surgery involves removal and microscopic examination of thin layers of tissue until the last traces of cancer have been eliminated during a single visit. Cancerous tissue is removed with minimal normal tissue, minimizing both wound size and chances of recurrence.
Mohs surgery is often used for basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma but is useful for a variety of skin tumors. In addition to new cancers, those tumors that have recurred after other treatments can be removed using this technique. The precision and tissue sparing nature of Mohs surgery is ideal for the elimination of cancers in cosmetically and functionally critical areas, such as the face, scalp, neck, hands and feet, and for larger or more complex tumors on practically any other area of the body.
American College of Mohs Surgeons fellowship-trained Mohs surgeons such as Dr. Mendese, undergo additional training in surgery, pathology and reconstructive surgery to provide the highest quality of treatment for your skin cancer and the best possible cosmetic outcome.
Advantages of Mohs Surgery
In addition to its high cure rate, Mohs surgery provides several other advantages for people with skin cancer:
- Compared to more conventional surgery, the precision of Mohs surgery usually minimizes scarring, which leads to better cosmetic and functional outcomes.
- No general anesthesia or sedation is required. All procedures are performed under local anesthesia (like the biopsy performed to identify your skin cancer) and are generally completed in 1 visit.
- Mohs surgery is very safe and can be used even for elderly patients too fragile to undergo other forms of surgery.
- Mohs surgery is performed in an office-based surgical suite, not in a hospital. This leads to greater comfort and a shorter procedure.
- Because it uses microscopic examination of every margin of removed tissue, Mohs surgery can more accurately eliminate the cancer and lessen the chance of recurrence. Cure rates are approximately 99% for basal cell carcinoma treated with Mohs surgery, the highest of any treatment option.
- Once the skin cancer is removed with the Mohs technique, more advanced techniques of wound repair such as skin flaps and tissue grafts can be used to achieve the absolutely best cosmetic results.