Mohs surgery—also called micrographic surgery—is considered the most effective technique for treating two of the most common types of skin cancer: basal cell carcinomas (BCCs) and squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs). The procedure is done in stages, including lab work, while the patient waits. This allows the removal of all cancerous cells while sparing healthy tissue and leaving a smaller scar than most other procedures.
What is the history of Mohs Surgery?
Mohs began in 1930 by a doctor named Frederic Mohs, who originally called it chemosurgery. Still, it was not widely used until the 1960s when dermatologist Dr. Perry Robins began to study the technique with Dr. Mohs, helping to advance the procedure into what it is today.
This technique allows for the cancerous cells to be removed while leaving the smallest possible scar. The procedure is done in one visit, while the patient waits between each stage. Your Mohs surgeon will remove some tissue and examine it under a microscope in a lab. If any cancer cells remain, your doctor will be able to pinpoint the exact location and remove just the cancerous cells from that precise area. This allows your doctor to leave the skin around the cancerous cells in tact.
When is Mohs surgery recommended?
Mohs surgery is only recommended for patients that fit specific criteria. Mohs surgery can be recommended for people with a BCC or SCC that is very large, close to an area with little tissue available beneath it such as your scalp, hand, foot, eyelid, or face.
Melanoma is an aggressive form of skin cancer. Although it is also commonly used for BCC and SCC, Mohs surgeons have been successful in using this technique to treat early stages of melanoma. In these cases, the procedure may take more than one visit.
Who can perform Mohs surgery?
Mohs surgery is performed by doctors specifically trained in the field. Most Mohs surgeons are dermatologists who have undergone extensive Mohs training to be able to successfully execute the surgery.
How do I find a Mohs Doctor?
It’s essential to find a qualified and experienced doctor to perform the surgery. Here at Academic Alliance in Dermatology we have several Board Certified dermatologists on staff who specialize in Mohs surgery. Schedule a consultation with one of our talented dermatologists today!