Bringing Closure to Skin Cancer
- Posted on: Apr 15 2017
Patients who even suspect a skin cancer diagnosis will be handed to them are in a state of anxiety the moment their skin cancer screening begins. What they want, long before they have the ability to articulate it, is closure. Now, when we say closure, we mean they want to put this whole, messy situation behind them. But closure means something else to the treating physician.
Historically, the primary objective of skin cancer treatment has been to remove cancer cells. Then, the focus may turn to wound reconstruction as needed. The development of the Mohs micrographic surgical technique has been a significant step forward in the area of patient outcomes, and we are pleased to support physicians interested in offering the highest standard of care, including quality and competency. If you have not registered for our annual Closure Course, taking place May 24 and 25 in Miramar Beach, Florida, call (800) 616-2767.
The Topic of Closure
The closure is a crucial aspect of obtaining the necessary integrity for wound healing regarding aesthetic value. The Mohs technique, in and of itself, has improved outcomes as they relate to this concern, as well as to recurrence and overall success. When possible, we understand that patients want answers as far in advance as possible. However, due to mitigating factors, including the size, location, and depth of the extracted growth, the estimation of reconstructive needs is best left open-ended until after skin cancer removal.
Dermatologic surgeons have a basic knowledge of secondary-intention healing, which is appropriate for the smallest and simplest incisions. Flaps and grafts are also common methods of reconstruction that are taught, but in which skills may be improved with additional training. Our Closure Course covers aspects of reconstruction such as flap refinements in addition to closure techniques.
The Mohs technique for skin cancer removal offers significant advantages including minimal disruption to the tissue around the cancerous growth and the possibility of same-day reconstruction when it is needed. Above all, it is the high success rate of Mohs that drives patients to seek this method of care, and physicians to obtain the necessary training so that they may offer it.
The American Society for Mohs Surgery has been supporting dermatologists, pathologists, and other Mohs technicians for over 15 years. Contact us for more information on our organization.
Posted in: Skin Cancer