Mohs surgery has been recognized as the skin cancer treatment with the highest reported cure rate. It is a specialized surgical technique for the precise removal of skin cancers while leaving all healthy tissue intact. It is extremely effective due to the methodical manner in which tissue is removed and examined. The technique is especially valuable to cosmetically important areas (nose, cheeks, eyelids, ears and lips) in need of skin preservation.
While a patient is under local anesthesia, the visible skin cancer is removed first and a fine additional layer is removed as a margin. The margins are meticulously examined under a microscope to ensure that all cancer cells were removed while the surrounding normal skin is left intact as much as possible.If cancer cells are present in the margin, an additional layer of skin is removed. These additional layers are removed in an incremental manner to maximally preserve healthy skin while offering the lowest recurrence rate for malignant lesions.
Following the removal of skin cancer, a patient will normally require a reconstructive procedure and be referred to Northwest Facial Aesthetic Center. During your first visit, a physician can show you how we have been able to improve the appearance of other cancer patients and help you understand what a reconstruction can do for you. Our physicians understand that it is normal to be concerned about how your face will look after Mohs surgery, and will work to give you a desired reconstructive result that looks natural. Their goal will always be to create a seamless transition from skin cancer removal to unparalleled facial reconstruction.
The reconstructive technique selected to repair your skin cancer defect will depend on a variety of factors including the amount of tissue removed during your Mohs surgery, your cancer surgeon’s input and the current condition of your skin and underlying tissue.
*It is important to note that Mohs surgery is not appropriate for the treatment of all skin cancers. It should be performed by a dermatologist with specialty training in this type of procedure.
When will my reconstructive surgery take place?
After your Mohs surgery is complete, your Mohs surgeon will bandage the wound and direct you to Northwest Facial Aesthetic Center. A physician will then examine the wound and discuss reconstructive options. After a decision is made, the procedure will be performed. This can be done on the same or the following day. We strive to offer same day service whenever possible.
Where is reconstructive surgery performed?
The surgery will normally take place at Northwest ENT Surgery Center. However, based on a patient’s health and ability to tolerate the procedure, their physician may decide to perform it at an outpatient surgery center.
How long is the procedure?
The reconstructive surgery can be performed under local anesthesia or mild sedation and takes anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours depending on the complexity of the surgery. Usually a patient’s Mohs surgery is completed by late morning and they will arrive at Northwest Facial Aesthetic Center in the afternoon.
How is surgery performed?
Please see the list of reconstructive surgeries.