Krauss Dermatology offers Mohs surgery to effectively treat skin cancer. The Mohs procedure makes it possible to remove cancerous cells with the highest cure rate and with the greatest sparing of normal tissue. Keep reading to learn more about Mohs surgery and the types of skin cancers it treats.
Mohs Surgery Overview
On average, one out of every five Americans develops skin cancer at some point in their lives. While many treatments for skin cancer exist, cure rates vary. Mohs surgery offers an effective method for extracting all of the cancer while minimizing removal of healthy skin, thus leading to the best repair and least scarring.
Anyone can develop skin cancer, regardless of age, but individuals aged 60 and over face a high risk. Other risk factors may also place you at risk such as increased sun exposure. Getting regular skin checks offers the best way to catch early signs of skin cancer and treat existing cancers early on.
What Is Mohs Surgery?
The Mohs surgery technique enables our Mohs surgeon, Dr. Suzanne Mosher, to remove skin cancer completely. After the skin cancer is removed, it is frozen, stained, sectioned and examined under the microscope by Dr. Mosher to check all margins.
If areas along the edge still house cancerous cells, Dr. Mosher will extract additional tissue slices. In total, it takes approximately one to three rounds before all of the cancer is removed. Once the skin cancer is removed and all edges have been examined and are free of tumor, Dr. Mosher can then reconstruct the area in the most effective way possible, utilizing a variety of techniques including flaps and grafts as needed to get the most superb healing and cosmetically advantageous scar placement.
The Mohs procedure works particularly well in treating basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers.
Dr. Mosher was voted Best of Boston for three years, Dr. Mosher takes a thorough and comprehensive approach to diagnosing and treating skin cancer.
A Mohs procedure takes place in an outpatient, in-office setting, using local anesthesia.
From there, Dr. Mosher will reconstruct the area to minimize the appearance of scarring.
Am I a Candidate for Mohs Surgery?
Candidates for Mohs surgery will meet one or more of the following criteria:
- Skin cancer diagnosis on the neck, face, scalp, hands, and legs
- Large or fast-growing cancer
- Cancer cell regrowth after prior treatment
- Immunocompromised patients
Also, if you have lentigo maligna, a specific form of melanoma, you may be a good candidate for another type of Mohs surgery, known as Slow Mohs.
Skin Cancer Risk Factors
Warning signs that place you at higher risk of developing skin cancer include:
- Having more than 50 moles
- 60 years old or older
- Multiple instances of severe sun damage or sunburns
- History of melanoma within your immediate family (parents, children, or siblings)
- Precancerous actinic keratoses
- Having a history of any form of skin cancer
- Tanning booth use
The Importance of Getting Yearly Skin Checks
Getting yearly skin checks is half the battle when it comes to catching precancerous and cancerous growths early on. This is especially true if you’re at a higher risk of developing skin cancer.
At Krauss Dermatology, we do extensive testing to ensure we correctly identify your risk factors and provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision.
“I really like coming here – specifically to see Dr. Norden (worth the drive). She’s very thorough, a good listener and detail oriented. I really appreciate that Dr. Norden doesn’t dismiss any question or concern – no matter how small or minor you may think it is – and she always explains very thoroughly why she’s recommending a particular course of action or treatment plan (I appreciate her clear communication). Dr. Norden is the best dermatologist that I have ever had – and she doesn’t hesitate to test anything that looks suspicious or that she wants confirmation about. My prior dermatologist waited over 18 months to test a suspicious spot on my nose and it turned out to be Basal Cell Carcinoma, requiring painful MOHs surgery and a skin graft. I feel like Dr. Norden is proactive, thorough and wouldn’t hesitate to test something sketchy. One other little thing that I LOVE about this doctor…I had some weird rough patch on my elbow that I had for years that I mentioned in passing during one of our appts. and the doctor gave me a couple of small free samples of this cream that cleared it right up in no time (like miraculously)…I later found out from my pharmacy that this miracle cream typically costs hundreds (literally hundreds) of dollars and most insurance companies don’t cover it. This one small gesture from the doctor saved me a ton of $. However, (more importantly) Dr. Norden saw a way she could solve a relatively minor problem, acted proactively and didn’t try to write me out a costly prescription when she had some samples readily available to help me. That’s how Dr. Norden rolls. Can’t beat that.”*
Take the Next Step
If you have further questions on Mohs Surgery, we encourage you to schedule a consultation at Krauss Dermatology. Call us at (781) 416-3500 or fill out our online contact form. We look forward to meeting you!