Skin cancer affects millions of people each year. While skin cancer can quickly become frightening and uncertain, some forms of skin cancer can be treatable during early stages.
What is Moh’s surgery?
Moh’s Surgery, or Moh’s micrographic surgery, is used to treat skin cancer. It is one of the few skin cancer treatments that involve removing only the cancerous cells, enabling the patient to keep as much healthy skin as possible with a high cure rate.
Moh’s surgery is unique as it allows the surgeon to see where the cancer is and where it stops. Other benefits include:
- Single-visit outpatient surgery
- Minimal recovery time
- Precise results
- Small scar
- Spares healthy skin tissue
How does Moh’s surgery work?
Moh’s surgery is a single day outpatient procedure that removes thin layers of skin and examines them for cancerous cells. During surgery, a local anesthetic is administered so that the patient can remain awake and alert throughout the procedure.
Before surgery, the area will be examined and marked for the procedure as you are prepared for surgery. A local anesthetic will numb the area and maybe reapplied throughout the surgery as necessary. During the procedure, the surgeon will remove the visible layers of cancerous tissue. The tissue will then be taken for lab analysis to determine if and where cancer cells remain. During the lab work, the wound will be bandaged as the patient and surgeon await results. If cancer cells are found, the location is marked, and another layer is removed until cancer cells are no longer present.
Once the area is clear of all cancer cells, the wound will be closed with stitches or bandaged to heal. A skin graft or cosmetic surgery may be needed depending on the size and location of the wound.
Moh’s surgery is one of the leading treatments for skin cancer, especially around sensitive areas such as the eyes, nose, lips, ears, and scalp. It is effective in treating both large and small areas, even if the cancer is recurring. If you have been diagnosed with skin cancer and are looking for a minimally invasive treatment option, you should discuss Moh’s surgery with your dermatologist. For more information, contact Washington Dermatology Consultants today.