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When is Mohs Surgery Used

Mohs Micrographic Surgery is most commonly used to remove non-melanoma skin cancers, like basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma, or tumors where specific indications apply. MMS is designed to provide the highest cure rate of any form of skin cancer removal and at the same time limit the loss of unaffected (normal) tissue.

It is for this reason that Mohs surgery is very highly utilized to remove skin cancers in the area of the head and neck, where preservation of the greatest amount of normal tissue, on critical anatomic areas (eyelids, nose, ears, and lips), greatly improved the final esthetic outcome.

Tumors removed by Mohs Surgery

Indications for Mohs Surgery

  • Basal cell carcinoma
  • Squamous cell carcinoma
  • Bowen's disease
  • Erythroplasia of Queyrat
  • Verrucous carcinoma
  • Microcystic adnexal carcinoma
  • Adenocystic carcinoma
  • Atypical fibroxanthoma
  • Malignant fibrous histiocytoma
  • Dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans
  • Extramammary Paget's disease
  • Lentigo maligna
  • Melanoma* (not in all centers)
  • Merkel cell carcinoma
  • Sebaceous gland carcinoma
  • Leiomyosarcoma
  • Hemangiosarcoma
  • Tumors that grow rapidly
  • Cancers where the edge of the cancer is not easily seen
  • Previously treated tumors
  • Incompletely removed tumors
  • Scar tissue exists in area of tumor
  • Tumors located at embryonic fusion planes
  • Tumors located in anatomic areas known to have a high incidence of recurrence
  • Basal cell carcinoma with aggressive Histologic character
    • Micronodular
    • Infiltrative
    • Morpheaform
  • Tumors known to have high recurrence following routine surgical excision
  • Larger tumors· Tumors attached to nerves· Tumors located in anatomic areas where preservation of the greatest amount of uninvolved tissue is critical

For specific information on the most common tumors treated by MMS go to Skin Cancer Guide .ca