Skin Cancer Treatment
Treatment of skin cancer is determined by the type of skin cancer, the location of the skin cancer, the extent of the skin cancer at the time of diagnosis, and co-morbidities in an individual patient. Once the diagnosis of skin cancer has been made, the dermatologist will discuss with the patient which type of skin cancer he or she has, its malignant potential, and the methods of treatment.
Skin cancer treatment procedures performed by Dr. Frank Victor:
Skin cancer treatment procedures NOT performed by Dr. Frank Victor:
- MOHS surgery
MOHS surgery is a technique developed by Dr. Frederic E. Mohs which serves two purposes. One purpose is to achieve clear tumor margins prior to surgical repair of the wound. This almost always eliminates the possibility of tumor recurrence and need for additional surgery as is sometimes the case with conventional surgical excision if standard surgical margins are not effective in complete removal of a skin cancer. The other purpose is to remove as little as possible of the surrounding normal tissue which results in smaller scars and potentially better aesthetic outcomes. In the MOHS technique, a small margin of normal appearing skin is removed around the site of the skin cancer. This tissue is then processed immediately in the MOHS surgeon's office. Thus microscopic evaluation is achieved instantly rather than awaiting a pathology report from an outside laboratory which can take several days. If the cancer is removed with the initial MOHS surgery layer, the defect is then repaired either by the MOHS surgeon or by a plastic surgeon. If the cancer is still present at any margin, additional MOHS layers are taken until full clearance is achieved. After clearance, the surgical defect is then repaired. MOHS surgery is most commonly employed to remove skin cancers in cosmetically important and functionally critical areas of the body. For more specific information on this topic, please refer to:
Radiation is sometimes used to treat non-melanoma skin cancers in patients who are not surgical candidates or in areas where significant cosmetic deformity may result from surgical excision. Local radiation is performed by a radiation oncologist and usually involves daily radiation treatments for several weeks depending on the skin cancer type.