Getting through your MOHS Micrographic Surgery

Since Mohs skin cancer surgery can be time consuming, you should expect to spend a large portion of your day at the physician's office or outpatient treatment center. The following recommendations are given by the American Society for Mohs Surgery.

Make sure you let your physician know ahead of time if you are taking any type of blood thinners like aspirin, Advil, Motrin, Naprosyn, Coumadin, etc. Do not rely on them to automatically catch that on your chart. It is very important to inform them of every medication, herbal supplement, or vitamin you may be taking. Some of these medications and supplements may cause prolonged bleeding during or even after surgery.

Most physicians will allow their patients to eat and drink before having Mohs surgery. If this is the case, it is important to eat a good breakfast the morning of your surgery and to also bring a snack with you.

For maximum comfort, you may want to Wear several light layers of clothing. You will be lying or sitting for long periods of time and physicians have a tendency to keep their treatment rooms cool.

The procedure will begin with the nurse or physician cleaning the affected area with an antiseptic cleanser. This may feel somewhat cold. The area to be treated will then be marked with a pen or marker and a local anesthetic will be injected. This should be the only discomfort you will feel during the procedure and is only temporary. If you should feel discomfort at any other time during the procedure, let your physician know right away. You should not feel the cutting of the affected tissues at all, however, you may feel pressure or a pulling sensation.

Your physician may have to perform a skin graft to cover the wound. If that is the case, you may notice that skin has been cut from a certain area of your body to cover the wound. You may also be given special instructions on how to care for your wound at home.

After the Mohs surgery, you may experience mild discomfort. Tylenol is usually effective at relieving this discomfort and normally most patients do not require anything stronger than this.