Depending on the size, type and location of the lesion, there are many ways to remove skin cancer and reconstruct your appearance if necessary.
Step 1 – Anesthesia
Medications are administered for your comfort during the surgical procedure.
Step 2 – Removal
A small or contained lesion may be removed with a simple surgical process to remove the lesion from the skin. It is important to remember that skin cancer can be like an iceberg in that what you can see on the surface sometimes may only be a small portion of the growth. Underneath the skin, the cancerous cells may cover a much larger region and there are no defined borders. In these cases, a specialized technique called Mohs surgery may be recommended. Whatever the procedure, the objective is to look for a clear margin — an area where the skin cancer has not spread.
Step 3 – Reconstruction
A large lesion or one that has been removed with frozen sections can be reconstructed with a local flap. A flap may also be necessary where excision may result in a disfiguring appearance. A local flap repositions healthy, adjacent tissue over the wound. A suture line is positioned to follow the natural creases and curves of the face if possible, to minimize the appearance of the resulting scar. A skin graft, healthy skin removed from one area of the body and relocated to the wound site, may also be applied.
Step 4 – See the results
After your skin cancer has been removed and any primary reconstruction is completed, a dressing or bandages will be applied to your incisions.