Did you know that nearly 20 percent of all Americans will develop skin cancer during their lifetime? Due to its high exposure to the sun, the face is a common area of the body to develop skin cancer. When a dermatologist gives you a diagnosis of facial skin cancer, the next step is almost always Mohs surgery, a highly-specialized procedure to remove the cancerous lesions.
While Mohs surgery carries an exemplary success rate for eliminating cancerous cells on your facial skin, it doesn’t have to permanently threaten your appearance. A board certified plastic surgeon with training in Mohs Reconstruction should also be involved in your skin cancer removal plan.
What is Mohs Surgery?
Mohs microscopic surgery, a procedure founded by Dr. Frederick Mohs in the 1930’s, has become today’s leading treatment for skin cancer removal. Mohs is typically performed by a qualified dermatologic surgeon and involves strategically and sequentially removing layers of tissue at a time. During surgery, each layer of tissue is closely examined under a microscope to ensure that only the cancerous layers of tissue are removed and more healthy skin cells remain. Mohs surgery is the gold standard for removing cancerous skin cells around the delicate areas of the eyes, ears and nose. Dermatologists undergo rigorous training to become a Mohs surgeon.
The Need for Reconstruction from a Plastic Surgeon
While Mohs surgery is known for minimizing tissue removal, there is almost always a need for aesthetic reconstruction following Mohs surgery. There is often scarring, defects and/or disfigurement of the face after this necessary surgery. Considering the careful artistry, balance and precision required to perform cosmetic surgery on the face, it is important that you include a qualified Mohs reconstruction plastic surgeon on your team of skin cancer treatment specialists. While a plastic surgeon won’t be removing the cancerous cells, the final step in facial reconstruction after Mohs surgery can be life-changing.
A Collaborative Effort to a Beautiful Complexion after Skin Cancer
Mohs reconstructive plastic surgery should not be an afterthought. The best results are achieved when immediate cosmetic reconstruction is initiated after the skin cancer is removed. In many cases, the plastic surgeon can work directly with your plastic surgeon to coordinate the best timing of each procedure.
Depending on the location, severity and size of the cancerous tissues that were removed, your Mohs plastic reconstruction can involve local tissue rearrangement using skin flaps or grafts, hiding scars/incisions in natural skin folds, microdermabrasion and other specialized treatments to smooth the area of skin and help patients regain the natural, functional and attractive complexion they deserve.
At Avance Plastic Surgery, we love helping patients look and feel good in their skin. However, we deeply value the health of your skin. We encourage regular skin cancer checks for our patients. If you’ve received a skin cancer diagnosis and Mohs surgery is in your future, we’d like to help you through the process. To learn more about what you can expect from Mohs reconstruction from a talented plastic surgeon in Reno, please call Avance Plastic Surgery today.