Why it's done

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 around the eyes, ears, nose, mouth, hands, feet and genitals
  • Have borders that are hard to define
  • Are large or aggressive
Sept. 06, 2017
References
  1. Robinson JK, et al., eds. Mohs micrographic surgery and cutaneous oncology. In: Surgery of the Skin: Procedural Dermatology. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2010. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed July 28, 2017.
  2. AskMayoExpert. Mohs micrographic surgery. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2016.
  3. Nehal K, et al. Mohs surgery. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Accessed July 28, 2017.
  4. Mohs micrographic surgery in the treatment of skin cancer. American Society for Mohs Surgery. http://www.mohssurgery.org/patient-resources/patient-brochure/. Accessed July 28, 2017.
  5. Squamous cell skin cancer. Fort Washington, Pa.: National Comprehensive Cancer Network. http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/f_guidelines.asp. Accessed July 28, 2017.
  6. Basal cell skin cancer. Fort Washington, Pa.: National Comprehensive Cancer Network. http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/f_guidelines.asp. Accessed July 28, 2017.
  7. Warner KJ. Allscripts EPSi. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. April 17, 2017.
  8. Gibson LE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 21, 2017.