Mohs Micrographic Surgery in Clifton, NJ
What is Mohs Micrographic Surgery?
Mohs micrographic surgery, also called Mohs surgery, is a surgical technique used to treat various forms of skin cancer. This procedure involves removing skin cancer one layer at a time and examining the layers under a microscope immediately following the procedure to make sure all of the cancer cells have been removed. Mohs surgery has become a popular treatment for many forms of skin cancer on the head and neck, as well as recurrent or aggressive lesions.
How Does it Work?
This procedure is commonly used in the treatment of basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas, the two most common types of skin cancer—although it can also be used to treat melanoma and other types of cancer as well. Mohs surgery is most commonly used in the treatment of recurring skin cancer because its results are so thorough. This procedure is also ideal for removing layers of skin cancer in cosmetically and functionally prominent areas that include the following:
Mohs micrographic surgery is usually performed on an outpatient basis. During the procedure, the affected area will be treated with a local anesthetic. Small layers of skin are removed and the area is closely examined to see if the cancer has been eradicated. Each skin layer that is removed is called a level. Each level of skin is frozen and stained with special dyes before it is examined under a microscope.
This process gives the physician the ability to immediately examine the entire tumor margin and tissue histology. If more cancer cells are found, another level of skin is removed and examined. Once all of the cancer cells are removed, the skin is considered clear and no further treatments are necessary. Mohs micrographic surgery significantly reduces damage to the surrounding tissue while effectively removing all traces of cancer. Most procedures can be performed in three stages or less.
Recovery and Results:
After Mohs micrographic surgery, patients sometimes experience mild discomfort in the form of bruising and swelling around the treated area. Prescription pain medication is available for patients if needed, although most only require over-the-counter medications for minor pain relief. Once the affected area is healed, scars may form, although they are often smaller than those from other excision procedures.
For patients concerned with the appearance of their skin after treatment, reconstructive procedures are available to reduce or even eliminate the appearance of scarring using skin flaps, skin grafts, laser treatments, dermal fillers and more. These procedures can be performed at the same time as the Mohs surgery or at a later date. The physician may also use certain techniques to reduce visual scarring, including placing stitching in the skin's natural crevices or out-of-sight areas.
Mohs surgery is the only skin cancer treatment available that targets only cancerous tissues through comprehensive microscopic examination of the area. Not only does this procedure remove the visible tumor, it also removes any “roots” that may have extended beneath the surface of the skin. Compared to other skin cancer treatments, Mohs surgery has a very high success rate. Request more information about Mohs micrographic surgery today. Call (973) 777-3711 or contact Dr. Maged Boutros online.