Why it's doneBy Mayo Clinic staff
Mohs surgery is used to treat the most common skin cancers, basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma, as well as some kinds of melanoma and other more unusual skin cancers. Mohs surgery is especially useful for skin cancers that:
- Have a high risk of recurrence or that have recurred after previous treatment
- Are located in areas where you want to preserve as much healthy tissue as possible, such as the eyes, ears, nose, mouth, hairline, hands, feet and genitals
- Have borders that are hard to define
- Are large or aggressive
- Robinson JK, et al. Surgery of the Skin: Procedural Dermatology. 2nd ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010:711.
- Benedetto PX, et al. Mohs micrographic surgery technique. Dermatologic Clinics. 2011;29:141.
- Nehal K, et al. Mohs surgery. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed July 6, 2012.
- Mosterd K, et al. Surgical excision versus Mohs' micrographic surgery for primary and recurrent basal-cell carcinoma of the face: A prospective randomised controlled trial with 5-years' follow-up. Lancet Oncology. 2008;9:1149.
- Tierney EP, et al. Recent changes in the workforce and practice of dermatologic surgery. Dermatologic Surgery. 2009;35:413.
- Murphy ME, et al. Errors in the interpretation of Mohs histopathology sections over a 1-year fellowship. Dermatologic Surgery. 2008;34:1637.
- Basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers. Fort Washington, Pa.: National Comprehensive Cancer Network. http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/f_guidelines.asp. Accessed July 11, 2012.
- Important patient information regarding Mohs micrographic surgery in the treatment of skin cancer. American Society for Mohs Surgery. http://www.mohssurgery.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageid=3335. Accessed July 6, 2012.
- Gibson LE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. July 19, 2012.