What to Expect with Mohs Surgery for Skin Cancer

Surgical Dermatologist Specialists

Finding out you have skin cancer can feel overwhelming. With so many different treatments and dermatologist specialists to choose from, it’s hard to know which option is right for you. Depending on the size, complexity, and location of the cancer, Mohs surgery may offer you the best, most cost-effective treatment.


Mohs surgery, or Micrographic surgery, is a specialized technique used by surgeons to remove skin cancers. The procedure is so precise, in fact, that most patients report seeing less scarring to the surrounding area of the wound.


To help you understand the unique benefits of Mohs surgery, here’s some answers to questions you may have:


How Does it Work?


Surgeons examine the identified tumor with a microscope and trace its roots. This allows them to accurately pinpoint the exact area of the cancer cells. During the surgery, layers of cancerous tissue are removed—one at a time—until only healthy tissue remains.


Is It Effective?


This form of skin cancer treatment offers the highest cure rate, typically 98-99%, and is used mainly to treat Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC) and Squamous Cell Carcinomas (SCC), two common types of skin cancer that usually appear on a person’s face, arms, and neck area. One of the most unique benefits of Mohs surgery is the surgeon’s ability to remove the cancer tissue without damaging the surrounding healthy skin. As a result, patients are left with minimal scarring on the affected skin area.


What Should I Expect During Surgery?              


As an outpatient procedure, most surgeries are performed in less than a day, and patients receive a local anesthetic to avoid discomfort during the procedure. Because the surgery is performed in a series of sessions, typically 2-3, you should plan on bringing something to read, as your skin care doctor will need time to examine the tissue between sessions.


What Happens After My Surgery?


After surgery, you and your dermatologist will decide which recovery option is best, and depending on the complexity of the wound, your doctor may suggest letting the wound heal on its own. If sutures are in place, suture removal will be arranged after surgery as well as any follow-up visits if deemed necessary.


Where Can I Find a Dermatologist Near Me?


You’ll need to schedule a pre-op consultation with a dermatologist specialist to determine whether Mohs surgery is right for you. At Associated Skin Care Specialists, our team of skin care doctors is available to answer your questions and help you in your fight against skin cancer. We also have four Mohs certified surgeons who are fully fellowship trained, the highest accreditation standard, and an on-site laboratory that is equipped to handle any skin-related services you may need. Contact one of our Minnesota offices today to schedule a consultation.