The Appeal of the Mohs Surgeon for Skin Cancer Patients
- Posted on: Oct 15 2020
A diagnosis of skin cancer is very frightening for any patient. Dermatologists learn this very quickly during their clinical careers. Regardless of where skin cancer develops, how big it is, or what type it is, patients understandably feel scared and stressed. Naturally, they will look to their doctor for answers. More than anything, what patients want to know is that their skin cancer can be treated. Alongside that, they want to know how it can be treated most successfully. As you know as a clinician, there are several treatment options to eradicate skin cancer growths. Here, we discuss why more patients are gravitating towards physicians who are trained to perform Mohs Micrographic Surgery.
Historically, skin cancer treatment has involved techniques like cryotherapy, topical medication, and excision. Over decades, the Mohs technique was perfected, bringing a new, conservative option to the table. Mohs is a meticulous and relatively time-consuming technique compared to other procedures. However, the combination of strategic removal and immediate examination produces a level of results that has yet to be matched. This translates into greater patient outcomes and also heightened peace of mind, which is rather priceless.
How Mohs Compares to Traditional Skin Cancer Surgery
Conventional skin cancer treatment involving excision requires the doctor to make the best estimate regarding tissue removal. This calls for the excision of extra tissue around a growth, hoping to successfully reach clear borders. It takes several days to confirm whether this was achieved. Furthermore, standard pathological examination analyzes approximately 3 percent of the margins in the specimen. By comparison, Mohs tissue examination evaluates 100% of the margins of the tissue removed, which significantly decreases the chances of recurrence.
Mohs, Time, and Trust: How One Builds off of the Next
One of the challenges that physicians face is building trust with their patients in the brief time they have together during visits. Training in the Mohs technique facilitates both timely response and trust. Patients appreciate the nature of Mohs surgery. Although more time is spent in the office on surgery day, there are fewer follow-ups and typically no need for repeated procedures to “clean up” the work that was done. More importantly, patients appreciate leaving the office knowing that their physician has reached a definitive conclusion about their skin cancer removal.
The American Society for Mohs Surgery has established specific courses to progress surgeons’ skills in this skin cancer treatment. For more information about education and membership, call (714) 379-6262.
Posted in: Skin Cancer