Mohs Micrographic Surgery offers the highest potential for recovery – even if the skin cancer has been previously treated by another method and recurred. Our two fellowship-trained MOHS surgeons have performed thousands of operations in the last decade.
Mohs surgery has been recognized as the skin cancer treatment with the highest reported cure rate due to the methodical manner in which tissue is removed and examined. Typically, MOHS surgery is performed as an outpatient procedure in the physician’s office. Although the patient is awake during the entire procedure, discomfort is usually minimal and no greater than it would be for more routine skin cancer surgeries.
Mohs surgery differs from other skin cancer treatments in that it permits the immediate and complete microscopic examination of the removed cancerous tissue so that all “roots” and extensions of the cancer can be eliminated.
Some skin cancers can be deceptively large – far more extensive under the skin than they appear to be from the surface. These cancers may have extensions or roots into the skin, or along blood vessels, nerves, or cartilage. Skin cancers that have recurred following previous treatment may send out extensions deep under the scar tissue that has formed at the site. Mohs surgery is specifically designed to remove these cancers by tracking and removing these cancerous extensions. For this reason, prior to Mohs surgery, it is impossible to predict precisely how much skin will have to be removed.
The final surgical defect could be only slightly larger than the initial visible or surface skin cancer, but occasionally the removal of the deep extensions of a skin cancer results in a sizeable defect. Mohs surgery removes only the cancerous tissue, while the normal tissue is spared. This is particularly impactful for areas of the body in which maximum preservation of healthy tissue is critical for cosmetic or functional purposes.
Carolinas Dermatology Group is a member of the American Society for Mohs Surgery. For more information on the procedure, please contact us today at (803) 771-7506.