What Happens During Mohs Surgery?

Dec 01, 2016
What Happens During Mohs Surgery?
Find out how effective Mohs surgery is at removing skin cancer.

Find out how effective Mohs surgery is at removing skin cancer.

If one of our Cocoa, Titusville, Palm Bay, Cocoa Beach and Melbourne, FL dermatologists just recently diagnosed you with skin cancer you may be feeling pretty overwhelmed by the diagnosis, but we are here to help. We understand that this is usually the time patients have a ton of questions and need answers most. That’s why we are here to tell you more about the effectiveness of Mohs surgery and what you can expect from this procedure.

What is Mohs Surgery?

This procedure is often a popular way to treat certain forms of skin cancer because it spares as much healthy tissue as possible while removing the cancerous tissue. During the procedure, you will be completely awake and the procedure will be performed under a local anesthesia so you don’t feel any pain or discomfort.

Our Cocoa, Titusville, Palm Bay, Cocoa Beach and Melbourne skin doctors will remove a small patch of skin and check for cancerous cells under the microscope. Cancerous cells look a lot like roots, which will be able to be seen under the microscope. If we see roots then we will need to remove another thin layer of skin. We will continue this process until we no longer see any cancerous cells in the sample.

Who should get Mohs surgery?

Mohs is typically a great option for patients who have cancer in areas in which it is particularly important to preserve as much of the skin as possible, such as the hands, eyes, nose, mouth or cheeks.

Mohs surgery is often used to remove both squamous and basal cell cancers, but there are some cases in which this surgery may be used to treat melanoma.

How long does it take?

This procedure will take a couple of hours to complete since we need to take samples and examine them under a microscope. It usually takes anywhere from one to three hours to complete. We will use lidocaine to numb the area prior to the treatment. We will remove the layer of tissue and have you wait while we examine your sample under the microscope. From there we will decide whether we need to remove more tissue or whether we can stitch up the area.

Here at Florida Dermatology Associates in Cocoa, Titusville, Palm Bay, Cocoa Beach and Melbourne, FL we believe knowledge is power. Skin cancer can easily be treated if you turn to us right away. Whether you need to schedule your routine skin cancer screening or you have questions about Mohs surgery, we are here to answer all of your questions.