Mohs surgery is performed in our office on an outpatient basis. First, local anesthesia is used to numb the tumor site. Then, a thin layer of skin is removed, processed in our office, and examined under the microscope by Dr. Halpern. If cancer cells remain, their locations are carefully diagrammed on a map. Using this map as a guide, another thin layer of skin will then be removed. Depending on the branching pattern of the tumor, this process may be repeated several times.
In some areas of the face, small wounds may look best if allowed to heal on their own. Most defects require at least a few small stitches. Larger wounds may need skin flaps or grafts. Both techniques involve moving healthier skin into the surgical wound. Unusually large or complicated tumors may require consultation with another sub-specialist. Unfortunately, the type of repair needed for your wound cannot be determined until the entire skin cancer is removed. The primary reason for Mohs surgery is to cure the skin cancer. Once this is completed, Dr.Halpern and our staff will help you to achieve the best cosmetic outcome possible.
Continue to take all medications as prescribed by your physician. If you are taking Fish oil, Vitamin E, or other supplements, please stop those for one week prior to surgery. These may cause increased bleeding. Be sure to take all of your other medications on the morning of surgery, and bring any doses that you take during the day with you to our office.
Alcohol may also cause increased bleeding. Please avoid alcohol for two days prior to surgery and two days after surgery. On the day of surgery, eat your normal breakfast. We suggest that you bring lunch with you, as well as something to read or pass the time.