Effective Mohs micrographic surgery in Westlake Village, CA
Mohs micrographic surgery is an advanced, targeted, and effective way to surgically eliminate skin cancer while minimizing the damage to the healthy tissue that surrounds the treatment area. This technique was developed more than 80 years ago.
It is still widely considered to be the most effective and successful way to combat squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) and basal cell carcinoma (BCC). Mohs surgery has a remarkable cure rate of 99 percent for skin cancer. This is much higher than other acceptable methods to treat various types of skin cancer.
The objective of Mohs surgery is to eliminate the skin cancer while causing minimal damage to the surrounding normal tissue. This procedure is typically done using local anesthesia on an outpatient basis. Dr. Daphne Panagotacos at Daphne I. Panagotacos, M.D. Skin Care Centre provides Mohs micrographic surgery in Westlake Village CA to appropriate candidates.
Mohs surgery is more advanced than standard surgery (local excision) which removes visible cancer and a tiny margin of the surrounding tissue simultaneously. Mohs surgery enables surgeons to ensure that all cancer cells are eliminated during surgery. This improves the probability of a cure and decreases the requirement for further treatments and surgery.
Is Mohs Surgery The Right Option For Me?
Since all skin cancer is different, they cannot all be adequately treated in the same manner. Our objective is to design a complete treatment plan that offers the patient excellent chances of a successful and sustainable recovery. We work closely with the patient and their physician to assess and evaluate their health history to establish if Mohs surgery is the right approach.
Mohs micrographic surgery is usually an ideal course of treatment for skin cancers on the neck and head, specifically those cancers that are:
- Present on the head (forehead, temple, nose, ears, eyes, or lips), fingers, or toes
- Poorly defined
- Recurrent (cancer has recurred following previous treatment)
In specific cases, patients with a suppressed immune system may benefit from Mohs surgery even if their skin cancer type does not meet any of the abovementioned criteria.
Mohs surgery involves the targeted removal of tissue layers at the cancerous site until all cancer cells have been destroyed. Every layer that is removed is meticulously analyzed using a microscope to detect cancer cell presence. The surgeon will remove tissue layers until no cancer cells remain, as determined by an analysis under the microscope.
Mohs surgery is remarkable and compelling as it enables the 100 percent microscopic evaluation of the surgical margin, unlike other techniques. Surgeons trained in Mohs surgery are particularly qualified to read the slides and interpret the margins of the tissue.
The Mohs surgeon functions as a pathologist as well. This is vital, as it enables the proper correlation of any microscopic discoveries with the surgical area on the patient. This precise, multi-step process allows the correct mapping and removal of skin cancer while making sure that all cancer cells are removed. This procedure also minimizes the loss of normal tissue surrounding cancer.
Mohs surgery can be comfortably and safely performed at our office. There is no requirement for general anesthesia. A local anesthetic is injected into the treatment site before the surgery commences. The patient may require further injections to make sure that they are comfortable in case multiple tissue layers need to be removed.
This procedure is typically spread over many hours, so patients need to plan their entire day with us. The actual process of removing the tissue is completed comparatively rapidly, and a comprehensive and thorough tissue analysis may require one to two hours or more for each tissue layer.
The surgeon can decide on how to repair the wound following cancer removal. This may include the following, depending on the extent of the surgery:
- Allowing the wound heal by itself (healing by second intention)
- Placing stitches to seal the wound (primary closure)
- Grafting skin from an adjacent site (skin flap) to cover the wound
While the success rate in Mohs micrographic surgery has significantly improved over the years, it is important to choose an experienced Mohs surgeon for best results.