Mohs Micrographic Surgery

 

There are many different ways to treat skin cancers.  Mohs micrographic surgery is a technique that allows surgeons to minimize the amount of tissue removed and provide the best possible cosmetic outcome all while achieving the highest cure rate of any technique currently available.  Dr. Bain can help you decide if Mohs surgery is the most appropriate treatment choice for your skin cancer. 

 

Mohs micrographic surgery is a technique that allows a surgeon to remove a cancer along with as little normal tissue as possible.  After removal of visible tumor, tissue is processed in a way that allows the surgeon to examine all of the peripheral and deep margins for any remaining “roots.”  If such remaining tumor is present, more tissue may be removed from the specific areas of margin positivity.  Once all of the tumor has been removed, the wound is closed in a way that gives you an optimal cosmetic and functional result.

Dermatologists who are fellowship trained in Mohs micrographic surgery have completed a 1-2 year fellowship following dermatology residency and are members of the American College of Mohs Surgery (ACMS).  Physicians who are not members of the ACMS have not undergone the same rigorous selection process and training for performing this advanced technique.

A great resource for patients interested in learning more about Mohs surgery and the ACMS can be found at:

http://www.skincancermohssurgery.org

Skin Cancers Appropriate for Mohs Surgery:

  • Skin cancers in anatomically sensitive areas where preserving the maximum amount of healthy tissue is critical for function and/or cosmetic outcome including the face, scalp, neck, ears, hands, feet and genitalia

  • Large skin cancers

  • Recurrent skin cancers or cancers that have not responded to other treatment methods

  • Skin cancers with indistinct or poorly defined borders

  • Skin cancers arising within or adjacent to a scar

  • Skin cancers with microscopically aggressive growth patterns

  • Basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma are the most common tumors treated with Mohs surgery, though there are many other tumor types for which this technique is used