WHAT IS MOHS?
Mohs micrographic surgery is a specialized, highly effective technique for the removal of skin cancer. The procedure was developed in the 1930s by Dr. Frederic Mohs at the University of Wisconsin and is now practiced throughout the world. Mohs surgery differs from other skin cancer treatments in that it permits the immediate and complete microscopic examination of the removed cancerous tissue, so that all “roots” and extensions of the cancer can be eliminated. Due to the methodical manner in which tissue is removed and examined, Mohs surgery has been recognized as the skin cancer treatment with the highest reported cure rate. For this reason, prior to Mohs surgery it is impossible to predict precisely how much skin will have to be removed. The final surgical defect could be only slightly larger than the initial skin cancer, but occasionally the removal of the deep “roots” of a skin cancer results in a sizeable defect. Most Mohs cases can be completed in three or fewer stages, requiring less than four hours. However, it is not possible to predict how extensive a cancer will be, as the extent of a skin cancer’s “roots” cannot be estimated in advance. Therefore, it is advisable to reserve the entire day for this surgical procedure, in case the removal of additional layers is required.
Atypical growth TX:
What is an atypical growth? Some people have Atypical Nevi. While these types of moles may look like melanoma, atypical moles are not cancerous. However, patients who tend to have atypical moles are at higher risk for melanoma than patients with no atypical moles. Although melanoma can develop from an atypical mole, most atypical moles do not turn into melanoma. In general, if a clinically atypical mole is not changing and the patient and practitioner do not suspect melanoma, an atypical mole does not have to be removed (but can easily be removed if the patient is worried). If a biopsy is performed and the pathology report demonstrates an atypical mole, the majority of dermatologists would recommend that moles with moderate or severe atypia should be completely removed.
the "ABCDE" of moles
- A = Asymmetry of outline
- B = Border irregularity
- C = Color irregularity
- D = Diameter greater than 6 mm (larger than a pencil eraser)
- E = Enlargement of recent origin (or any change)
While these types of growths are harmless, we realize some patients would prefer to have them removed for aesthetic purposes. We offer several in-office treatment options to remove these growths, including simply clipping them off, cauterizing them, or using liquid nitrogen to freeze them off. Your practitioner will determine the most effective method for you.
The most common method of benign growth removal is known as excision. Excision is a simple surgical procedure that removes the growth from the skin. Closing that same lesion is generally done in conjunction with the excision as well. Even though these growths are benign, they are all sent for pathology evaluation. Because these are benign growths, their removal is considered an elective cosmetic procedure.