Mohs surgery targets cancerous skin tumors while leaving the rest of your skin intact. Here's how.
If you've been diagnosed with skin cancer - squamous cell carcinoma, basal cell carcinoma or melanoma-in-situ - you are likely concerned about the removal of the cancer. "Will the surgeon be able to take out all the cancerous cells?" or "Will my skin return to normal?" are two common questions posed to Dr. S. Mark Burnett hears at his Sarasota, Florida dermatology practice. Using the revolutionary Mohs surgery technique, the typical answer to both questions is a confident "Yes!"
What is Mohs surgery?
Mohs surgery, sometimes called chemosurgery or micrographic surgery, treats skin cancers by removing the layers of skin from the affected area one-by-one so they can each be examined before moving on to the next. This ensures that your Sarasota dermatologist has removed as much of the cancerous tumor as possible while leaving the surrounding healthy tissue in tact. By examining the tissue during the surgery, this cuts down on the need for more procedures and increases the likelihood the cancer will be totally removed from your skin.
What kind of cancer does Mohs surgery treat?
Mohs surgery is used on common skin cancers likes basal and squamous cell carcinomas, especially when they are located on areas of the body where tissue preservation is important - the eyes, ears, nose, mouth, hands, feet, groin and hairline, for example. Mohs surgery can be used on certain melanomas if they have not metastasized, or spread, to other areas of the body. These growths are referred to as "melanoma-in-situ." Through examination and testing, your Sarasota dermatologist will be able to determine what kind of skin cancer you have and the type of treatment it needs.
If you've noticed a change in a mole or a new growth on your skin, or you have a history of skin cancer, it's important to contact Dr. Burnett's office right away for an evaluation. If you do have a cancerous lesion, early treatment with Mohs surgery just might be a life saving procedure.