Mohs Micrographic Surgery gives the best chance of cure for high risk non-melanoma skin cancers on the face and neck. The most common type of skin cancer requiring this treatment is called a Basal cell carcinoma (BCC). The cure rate after Mohs surgery for a BCC is 98-99%.
This type of surgery is different from the standard surgical technique in that it allows the immediate and full microscopic examination of the specimen whilst the patient waits- typically taking 30-60 minutes for a complete examination of all the specimen’s margins. It gives the highest cure rates and means only cancerous tissue is removed it thus enables the best chance of a cosmetically good reconstruction and scar that is free of skin cancer.
Mohs surgeons have extensive training in wound repair and reconstruction and in most cases will perform the wound repair on the same day.
Sometimes patients are planned in advance to be transferred to other hospitals if particularly difficult wounds are occasionally to be reconstructed by other surgeons such as Eye Surgeons, ENT Surgeons, Max Fax surgeons or Plastic Surgeons. If this applies to you it will have been discussed with you in clinic prior to surgery and all the necessary arrangements will be made.
Following surgery you will have access to Nurse Led Wound Check Clinics to support your recovery.
Before you attend for treated you will be assessed by a Mohs Surgeon in clinic. Not every patient needs or requires Mohs surgery and other options may be discussed. If appropriate you will be listed for Mohs Surgery and contacted by the Co-ordinator to arrange an appointment.
Mohs Surgery is a Day Case Procedure and takes several hours to complete. You will be asked to bring a list of medications with you on the day and a packed lunch. Hot/cold drinks will be provided. You may also like to bring a book or magazines. You cannot drive home or take public transport home. Please do not wear any make-up on the day.
When you arrive for your surgery you will be met by a team of experienced Mohs nurses who will be responsible for your care. They will be available to support you throughout your stay.
Your surgery will be performed under local anaesthetic. You may feel quite tired after your surgery is complete and will need to arrange for someone to drive you home.
Mohs Surgery Unit
Dermatology Outpatient Department #
You will initially be seen by a general dermatologist who will assess whether you warrant referral to the specialist Mohs service- most BCCs and skin cancers do not require Mohs surgery which is for difficult BCCs often around the eyes, ears, nose or mouth.