Mohs surgery is the gold standard for removing cancerous skin cells. Because it’s essential to remove as much of the affected tissue as possible, you want a provider who has specialized training. At Stein Dermatology and Skin Surgery, Alexander Stein MD, FAAD, FASDS, is a fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology, the American Society of Dermatological Surgery, and a member of the American Society of Mohs Surgery. As a leader in Mohs surgery, you can feel confident that Dr. Stein can remove cancerous tissues while making every effort to preserve healthy tissue. To schedule a consultation, call the office in Chula Vista, California, or request an appointment online today.
Mohs surgery, named for the physician who developed the technique – Frederic E. Mohs, MD – involves removing more than visible problematic tissues.
Visible cancerous lesions are often the tip of the iceberg since most tumor cells grow down and out, much like a tree. Because the tumor “root” is only visible under a microscope, it’s essential to remove not only the visible part of the growth but also the surrounding tissue.
Mohs surgery involves removing the skin cancer in stages, one layer at a time. After removing a tissue layer, your practitioner marks the edges with colored dyes to create a map of the specimen. The next step involves a Mohs surgeon examining the tissue under a microscope, so they can precisely identify and map out where the cancer is growing.
This process is repeated, layer by layer, until the entire cancer is successfully removed. Depending on the size of your wound, you may need stitches. For deeper wounds, you could need a skin flap or graft, but Dr. Stein is an expert when it comes to reconstructing your skin after Mohs surgery to minimize scarring.
Mohs surgeons, such as Dr. Stein, have to go through at least one year of fellowship training beyond their dermatology residency to ensure their expertise in removing cancerous tissues.
If this is the first time this particular area is being treated, meaning you haven’t had a cancerous growth on that spot before, Mohs surgery is up to 99% effective for curing cancer.
If the growth has occurred in the past and you’re having the area treated again, Mohs surgery is up to 94% effective. Because Dr. Stein has an extensive background in Mohs surgery, you can feel confident that your procedure is going to be as effective as possible.
Most of the time, you only need a local anesthetic for Mohs surgery procedures. It’s also performed right in the office.
Usually, the most uncomfortable part of the surgery is the first few seconds of the anesthetic injection. Once Dr. Stein numbs the area, you shouldn’t feel anything. If you do feel pain or discomfort, he can inject more medication to help soothe your nerves.
Whether you’re looking for a specialized Mohs surgeon or you have a suspicious growth, schedule an appointment at Stein Dermatology and Skin Surgery. Call the office or book an appointment online today.