Westlake Village dermatologist trained in Mohs surgery to treat skin cancer believes the cost is worth it!
The words skin cancer can strike fear in even the bravest heart. But it’s two words that many people will hear in their lifetime. More people are diagnosed each year with skin cancer than all other cancers combined. It’s estimated that twenty percent of Americans will develop skin cancer by the time they turn 70. At Daphne I. Panagotacos, M.D., located in Westlake Village, CA, we can guide you through a skin cancer diagnosis and treatment with compassion and expert care. One treatment method we employ is Mohs surgery for skin cancer removal. If you worry about your chance for skin cancer, or have even the slightest suspicion about a mole or sore, call us immediately. We can help!
What skin cancer is:
Skin cancer occurs when abnormal skin cells go into a phase of uncontrolled growth. Unrepaired DNA damage to skin cells is the cause of this uncontrolled growth. This damage can cause mutations or defects at the gene level. There are a few different types of skin cancer, the most common being melanoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and basal cell carcinoma.
What Mohs surgery is:
Mohs surgery is also referred to as Mohs micrographic surgery. Both terms refer to the same procedure. Mohs works to remove as much of the affected area of the skin cancer area as possible while saving the healthy skin around it. This is achieved by the removal of a single layer of skin at a time. The doctor performing the surgery also acts as the pathologist by examining each layer of skin under a microscope to determine if the cancerous cells are still present. This removal of skin layers continues until all the cancer is removed. Mohs surgery is often considered the most effective treatment for squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma, though it is also used for some cases of melanoma with successful outcomes. It is typically a longer surgery, and can sometimes take an entire day to perform. However, it’s done on an outpatient basis, and you will return home after the surgery is completed. Depending on the specifics of your skin cancer, after the procedure, the surgical site may be stitched closed, allowed to heal on its own, a skin graft may be performed to cover the wound, or temporarily close the site to allow for reconstruction to occur later.
Benefits of Mohs surgery:
- Mohs surgery has a 99 percent cure rate when used to treat initial cases of skin cancer. It can have up to a 95 percent cure rate when used on recurrent skin cancer. This is the highest cure rate for skin cancer treatments.
- Reduces errors: Because the physician performing the surgery is also acting as the pathologist, the rate of error is minimal.
- Increased accuracy: Mohs is the only treatment to immediately check the outer edges of the skin cancer site to confirm the cancer is eliminated.
- Minimized scarring: Due to the careful precision used during Mohs, less healthy tissue is removed. This decreases the amount of scarring left by surgical treatment.
- Less expensive: Because Mohs has the highest rate of cure of all skin cancer treatments, this helps avoid repeat visits to a doctor to treat the same skin cancer.
Why Daphne I. Panagotacos, M.D. is the place for you:
Dr. Panagotacos is a fellowship trained Mohs surgeon. Many other dermatologists in the area refer skin cancer patients to her to receive Mohs surgery. We have built our practice around compassionate, individualized care. That means that we strive to ensure that you never feel like a case number. We always take the time to answer all your questions and educate you on the procedure, the correct follow-up care, and preventive education to help empower you to know the best methods of protection against further skin cancer cases. Because we see each patient as an individual, we endeavor to ensure that any treatment path chosen is the correct one for you and your specific concerns.
We can erase the fear a skin cancer diagnosis causes. Call us today for your individualized consultation to determine if Mohs surgery is the solution for you. We want you to live a life of health and peace of mind. 805-379-3376.