Mohs Surgery For Skin Cancer

The term "Mohs" refers to Dr. Frederic Mohs, Professor of Surgery at the University of Wisconsin, who developed this surgical technique in the 1930s. The technique has undergone many refinements and has come to be known as "Mohs micrographic surgery" or simply "Mohs surgery" in honor of Dr. Mohs.

The MOHS procedure involves surgically removing skin cancer layer by layer and examining the tissue under a microscope until healthy, cancer-free tissue around the tumor is reached (called clear margins). Because the Mohs College surgeon is specially trained as a cancer surgeon, pathologist, and reconstructive surgeon, Mohs surgery has the highest success rate of all treatments for skin cancer – up to 99%.

Mohs surgery is a procedure for removing cancerous cells from the skin for patients diagnosed with various types of skin cancer. Mohs surgery relies on a micrographic technique, which is a highly effective method for removing cancerous cells while sparing as much healthy tissue as possible. Mohs surgery has a cure rate of nearly 99 percent for most skin cancers when caught early.

Benefits of Mohs Surgery

There are several benefits to choosing Mohs surgery as a method for treating skin cancer. At almost 99 percent, Mohs surgery has one of the highest cure rates of the different methods for treating skin cancer. Additionally, due to its advanced micrographic technique for removing cancerous cells, Mohs surgery conserves more healthy tissue than other similar treatment methods. In Lewiston, Mohs surgery is performed at Niagara Dermatolgoy Associates.

The Procedure

Mohs surgery utilizes a micrographic technique to remove cancerous tissue while sparing healthy tissue. Local anesthesia is administered to the surgery site and patients remain awake during the procedure. Any visible tumor is removed from the skin and examined under a microscope to determine if the tumor is malignant or benign. If the tumor is malignant, the area around the tumor site will be mapped out.

Once the affected area is mapped, small portions of surrounding tissue will be removed and examined under the microscope to check for cancerous cells. This process of removing and examining small samples of skin tissue at a time continues until all the cancer has been eliminated. If a large area of skin had to be removed during the procedure, a skin graft or tissue flap is performed to cover the area back up. If the area is small, it will be stitched closed.

Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer to affect individuals in the U.S. Mohs surgery is one of the most effective methods for treating most types of skin cancer. 

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Want to learn more about Mohs Micrographic Surgery from Niagara Dermatology Associates? Call our Lewiston, NY or Kenmore, NY office at (716) 205-8324 to book an appointment

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