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Mohs micrographic surgery is one of the most effective treatments to remove some types of skin cancer lesions. Up-to-date, it remains the least invasive and most reliable technique for getting rid of skin cancers such as squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma. It can also treat some cases of melanoma which is the most severe form of skin cancer. A Chevy Chase Mohs surgery specialist can see precisely where the skin cancer ends during the procedure, which presents two main advantages. It increases the cure rate of this treatment and allows you to maintain as much healthy skin as possible because it only gets rid of the skin with cancer cells. You can significantly benefit from this treatment if skin cancer develops in an area with very little underlying tissue.

What Is the Purpose of the Surgery?

Mohs surgery is a very intensive procedure. A specialist has to carry out the microscopic analysis of tissue cells in the location of the surgery. They analyze the borders of each thin film of tissue for any potential malignancy as they eliminate them horizontally. 

The treatment removes the whole tumor with an almost negligible amount of healthy tissue resulting in minor disfigurement. This makes it an ideal option for treating skin cancers affecting the face, ears, and genitals.

Mohs surgery has shown a significant success rate when treating skin cancers that have a high recurrence rate. It can also effectively treat large and aggressive lesions or lesions with ill-defined borders.

Risks

Mohs surgery uses local anesthesia, so you do not have to worry about common surgical risks associated with general anesthesia. Some of the most common risks associated with Mohs surgery include tenderness around the area of surgery and temporary bleeding and pain. While you can develop more severe problems, it is scarce. Some of the potentially severe problems include keloid and temporary or permanent weakness or numbness around the area of surgery.

It requires great skill and training since the surgeon has to map out the tumor accurately and analyze the film of tissue removed during the procedure. They may have to work with a highly experienced dermatologist. Any surgeon conducting the process should also have the relevant certification. With proper training, they can effectively read the slides and close the wound to leave as little deformation as possible.

Recovery

You will feel fatigued at the end of the surgery. You may need to go slow and avoid strenuous activities such as bending over the following few days. Your surgeon can prescribe antibiotics to prevent infections. Before leaving the hospital, the surgeon will cover the surgery site with a bandage which you should keep on for 24 to 48 hours. They will advise on when to remove the bandage and how to care for your wound. If you experience any post-surgical discomfort, ask your doctor about the proper medications to use.

To summarise, Mohs surgery is the most effective way to remove some types of skin cancer lesions. A surgeon microscopically analyzes tissue cells in the affected area to remove the entire tumor with a minimal amount of healthy tissue to limit disfigurement. Since it uses local anesthesia, you may rarely experience common surgical risks. After surgery, you should avoid strenuous activity for a couple of days and follow the instructions provided by your surgeon.

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