Introduced by Dr. Fredrick Mohs in 1930s, Mohs Micrographic surgery (MMS) uses a technique which removes several layers of skin cancer through surgical excision. This is done commonly when the cancer is in areas such as nose, lip, and ear or close to the eye where it is important to remove as little skin as possible.
How successful is NYC Mohs surgery?
The success rate for Mohs Surgery in treating recurrent and/or aggressive cancers is greater than 99% for basal cell carcinomas and greater than 95% for squamous cell carcinomas. Dr. Shelton says skin cancers are curable if they are treated early and the cosmetic results also can be outstanding.
How is Mohs surgery performed?
Dr. Shelton who is a highly trained and experienced dermatologic surgeon, shows the process of Mohs surgery in the above video - how specimens are analyzed at his laboratory and how the margins are examined if they are clear.
As the skin cancer is surgically removed, each section of skin is carefully identified and mapped by Dr. Shelton himself, so its exact location can be pinpointed. He examines 100% of the surgical margin . He inspects each layer under a microscope checking for cancer cells. If cancer cells are found in the specimen, Dr. Shelton is able to pinpoint their location using the mapping technique. He repeats the procedure in a 3-dimensional way until the entire base and sides are clear of cancer cells.
Major advantages of Mohs Surgery
- Mohs has a high cure rate of skin cancers
- Mohs surgeon is able to remove only the skin with cancer cells, while removing the least amount of normal skin.
What type of cancer is Mohs surgery used for?
Most common skin cancers such as Basal Cell Carcinoma and Squamous Cell Carcinomas can be treated very well with Mohs. It is recommended when a BCC or SCC is large or aggressive or if it appears in an area with little tissue to spare, or if the cancer has recurred after prior treatment.
How Long Does Mohs Surgery Take?
Mohs Micrographic surgery allows Dr. Shelton's patients to come and have the skin cancer removed and undergo reconstruction with local anesthetic on the very same day. Sometimes it takes a few hours, and others it takes the whole day depending on the number of stages it takes to clear the margins of the skin cancer and the complexity of the reconstruction.
Ready to find out more?
If you or someone you know has a skin cancer and wants minimal scarring, Dr Shelton can help! Call today (212) 593-1818 or schedule a consultation online!