Pre-Mohs Surgery Instruction

Pre-Excision/Mohs Instructions

Please note, if you notice a significant increase in the size of the skin cancer we will be removing between the time you were initially evaluated and the scheduled date for surgery, we ask that you notify the office so we may re-evaluate the area or see you sooner

  1. Unless prescribed/recommended by a physician, it is best to avoid aspirin, ibuprofen or naproxen two weeks prior to surgery. Also please stop Vitamin E, fish oil and gingko biloba.
  2. Please avoid alcohol for 48 hours prior to surgery.
  3. If you take Coumadin, Plavix or another prescription blood thinner, please do not stop it preoperatively.
  4. On the day of your surgery:
    • Eat a light breakfast (and lunch, if surgery is in the afternoon)
    • Please take your daily medications. If you take a fluid pill, please hold off on your morning dose and instead take it when you arrive home after surgery
    • Wear comfortable loose-fitting clothing but avoid clothing that needs to be pulled over your head, as this may interfere with your post-operative dressing
    • Please do not use any moisturizers on your surgical day. For surgeries involving the face, please avoid any cosmetics/makeup
    • Shower and shampoo before surgery, as your wound and initial dressing, need to remain dry for approximately 24 hours after surgery
  5. If you are advised by your primary care physician or cardiologist to pre-medicate with an antibiotic (such as for dental work) please do so for us as well – one hour prior to procedure time.
  6. After surgery, wound care instructions will be reviewed with you. You will likely be leaving with stitches and a bandage. Here are some items you’ll need to care for your wound:
    • Hydrogen peroxide
    • 2×2″ or 4×4″ gauze pads and bandage tape
    • Aquaphor or vaseline ointment – available at all pharmacies, no prescription needed
    • Band-Aids
    • Bags of frozen peas or corn which can be used as ice packs. Do not use chemical ice packs on surgical areas unless wrapped in a towel or placed in a plastic bag.
  7. You may need to return to have a wound check in 1-4 weeks

Should you have questions or concerns, please feel free to call us at (781) 416-3500.

Exercise or other strenuous activity that places tension on the surgical site (weight lifting, golf, etc.) should be avoided for two weeks after the surgical procedure for optimal wound healing.