MOHS SURGERY

Treat Skin Cancer With Precision

There are many ways skin cancer can be treated. One of the most advanced and effective methods for certain types is Mohs surgery. Taylor Mulkey, MD is a fellowship trained Mohs surgeon and expert board-certified dermatologist at Germain Dermatology. She can provide assistance to patients to effectively remove cancerous cells while preserving the maximum amount of surrounding tissue.

Mohs surgery is a surgical excision performed in stages as cancerous tissue is cut away layer by layer.  Its ability to remove only as much skin as necessary to excise the cancerous tissue makes it ideal for highly visible areas of the body, such as the face. Dr. Frederick Mohs pioneered the technique in the 1930s, which now provides a 97 to 99 percent cure rate.

Mohs Surgery and Skin Cancer

Because basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma spread relatively slowly and can remain contained in a small area if caught early, they are ideal for treatment with Mohs surgery.

The technique involves the surgeon removing very thin layers of tissue taken from the target area, then examining the margins closely with a microscope to identify cancer cells. The process continues until there is no trace of cancer present in the layers being scrutinized. This allows the surgeon to remove all of the cancerous tissue and virtually only the cancerous tissue.

Such highly focused precision has benefits beyond the aesthetic. Tumors that have recurred after a previous treatment respond well to Mohs surgery, as do growths that have ill-defined borders.

Mohs Surgery at Germain Dermatology

Dr. Germain is a fellow of the American Society of Mohs Surgery and can refer patients to other Mohs surgeons in the local area. Any surgeon seeking to practice this technique must undergo specialized training to ensure patient health and safety.

Other Skin Cancers

Mohs surgery is intended for use with basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas. Patients who have been diagnosed with the more aggressive and rapidly spreading melanoma will be referred to other treatment options for this diagnosis. Germain Dermatology providers will guide their patients and provide information to help them make the best decision based on their diagnosis and health.

While Mohs surgery is very effective for treating skin cancers in certain areas, the best defense against skin cancer is prevention. Children and adults alike should use sunscreen daily and keep their skin out of direct sunlight as much as possible by wearing appropriate clothing. While skin cancer may be caused by a variety of factors, a major contributor is ultraviolet radiation from the sun and lights found in tanning beds. Early detection is also key in the fight against skin cancer. Schedule regular visits with your dermatologist, who will examine your skin and test any suspicious lesions as necessary.

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