When the skin experiences an abnormal growth, skin cancer forms. It can result in atypical moles, melanoma, actinic keratosis and other formations directly on the skin that require removal. Many patients are understandably worried about undergoing skin cancer removal in fear of pain, scarring, and more. However, it is an essential process that results in numerous benefits. If you require skin cancer treatment, do not delay it.
Mohs surgery is used to remove cancerous cells from the skin, and it has been in use since the 1930s. When the surgeon only needs to remove a small amount of skin, the patient typically does not require anesthesia. The surgeon will go over the various skin layers to ensure 100 percent of the cancer is removed. The process can be compared to taking the roots of a tree out of the ground to ensure it doesn’t grow back. In recent years, Mohs surgery has touted a 99 percent cure rate so you can be confident in their thorough treatment.
For some surgeries, you may need to block out an entire day for the process and recovery. With Mohs surgery, most people will only need to be in the office for one to three hours. Removing the first layer of skin tissue will take about 10 minutes. At that point, you will wait while the surgeon examines the tumor. After the inspection, you may need additional layers removed or stitches. The process will not take long and depending on your doctor’s instructions you can carry on with your daily routine by the next day.
The surgery is incredibly useful no matter where the cancerous cells have developed. Even if you have developed a tumor around your mouth, nose, eyes or ears, an experienced surgeon can remove it. The surgery can also be completed on the neck, feet and hands where you want to keep as much skin tissue as possible.
You can expect a small amount of scarring to occur from Mohs surgery. The surgeon will do everything possible to limit the appearance of the scar, especially if the surgery is conducted on a prominent area, such as the face. After the surgery, your doctor will provide you with aftercare instructions to avoid making the scars more apparent, such as:
Although you may not need general anesthesia, the surgeon will provide a local anesthetic to reduce pain. As far as aftercare, you may experience some discomfort for the first one to three days following the treatment. Most people will not require prescription painkillers, but this can be determined by consulting your doctor. You should contact your doctor if you are still experiencing pain after the first three days.
Anyone who requires skin cancer removal needs to contact the office of Dr. Michael Streitmann promptly. You can contact us through our online form or by phone at 713-667-4600. You can schedule a consultation at our office to go over your options and to learn more about the process of removing skin cancer.