Even though Mohs surgery is performed on an outpatient basis, it still carries risks. For the best outcome possible, please do the following beforehand:
The surgeon will numb the area around the skin cancer and remove what is visible. The tissue then will be mapped, coded and brought to our on-site lab to examine.
This process (called “stages”) will be repeated until all cancer is removed. Although we cannot predict before surgery how many stages will be needed, most cases require no more than three.
Mohs surgery is performed in our outpatient facility, and patients return home the same day.
The surgical procedure lasts only 10 to 15 minutes. However, it can take up to two hours to examine the tissue removed at each stage. Thus, please make no other commitments the day of surgery. While magazines and Wi-Fi are available, you may want to bring other materials to pass the time while waiting.
Will the surgery leave a scar?
Yes. Any form of treatment will leave a scar. However, because Mohs surgery removes as little normal tissue as possible, scarring is minimal.
Several options are available to close the wound:
What should I expect after surgery?
You will have bandages and some discomfort for a few days. Usually, one or two return visits are needed to remove stitches and monitor healing. Afterward, you can return to your own doctor for routine check-ups.
A follow-up period of at least five years is essential. After having skin cancer, statistics show that you are at increased risk of developing more skin cancer. Skin examinations should be performed once or twice a year to evaluate the treated area and to check for new skin cancers.
The best protection from skin cancer is to avoid the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun.
For additional information about Mohs, visit American College of Mohs Surgery.