Mohs micrographic surgery is a specialized technique for the treatment of skin cancers, which was developed in the 1930s by Frederick Mohs. A Mohs surgeon can evaluate the tumor margins microscopically, providing much higher cure rate
than conventional treatment. It offers patients the convenience of having a tumor removed, cleared, and repaired in the same day. Due to the precision nature of this procedure, the results are esthetically superior to most traditional tumor removal methods.
Dr. Panagotacos is a skilled medical dermatologist, and fellowship-trained Mohs surgeon. She has completed extensive training in every aspect of the procedure, including the reconstructive phase. She performs the entire Mohs procedure, here in her Westlake Village, CA, office.
Mohs surgery is minimally invasive
, and therefore requires only local anesthesia. A thin tissue specimen is carefully removed from the peripheral region of the visible cancer. This tissue is mapped with dye, allowing microscopic evaluation of 100 percent of the margins. The Mohs surgeon acts as the pathologist, examining the slides to determine if there is any margin involvement of the tumor. If any residual cancer is detected, another thin piece of tissue is removed and evaluated. This process is repeated until all cancerous cells have been removed.
Once the tumor is removed and cleared, the reconstruction phase begins. Depending on the size and location of the tumor, various closure methods may be utilized, including flaps, skin grafts, and side-to-side repairs. In some cases, the incision is allowed to heal naturally.
Mohs surgery has an average cure rate of approximately 95 percent (recurrent tumor) to 99 percent (first time treatment), although this varies depending on the type of cancer. It is primarily used for squamous cell carcinomas, basal cell carcinomas, and some melanomas, but can be used for other rare tumors. It is often used for recurrent cancers, after other procedures have failed.
This is the preferred treatment for many areas of the face, where you don't want to sacrifice unaffected skin. Mohs preserves more healthy tissue
than techniques such as excision, resulting in a smaller scar, and simpler repairs. To learn more about skin cancer, and Mohs treatment, call us today at 805-379-3376 (805-379-DERM