What is Mohs Micrographic Surgery?
If you have been diagnosed with skin cancer such as basal cell carcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma, your doctor will discuss the different treatment options that you have to remove the cancer. One of the methods of skin cancer removal is called Mohs Micrographic Surgery, developed by Dr. Frederick Mohs in the 1930's. Mohs surgery is usually reserved for cancers on the face and neck, hands, large cancers, cancers that are ill defined, or areas that are difficult to close. With Mohs surgery, the skin cancer is cut out, the samples are prepared by the lab technicians, and the surgeon maps out the direction of the cancer. He follows the cancer until it is completely clear, and then the wound is closed. Mohs Surgery has a 98% cure rate, so you basically go home cancer-free. Our Mohs cancer surgeon, Dr. Shahan, (who is the past president of the San Diego Mohs Society) comes every other Monday and brings his lab, technicians, and assistants with him. Expect Mohs surgery to last about 45 minutes to 3 hours, depending on the number of layers or times that your cancer has to be cut out due to its size.
*This infographic was taken from About Dermatology.