Mohs Surgery FAQs

Every patient has a number of questions about Mohs surgery.  If you have a skin cancer diagnosis, the expert surgeons at MetroDerm, P.C. will patiently answer questions and prepare you for this state-of-the-art surgical procedure.

Q: How does Mohs surgery work?

A: Once the affected area is numbed with a local anesthetic, the visible tumor and a thin layer of surrounding tissue known as the safety margin will be removed. The tissue is taken immediately to our in-house laboratory where it is processed and examined under a microscope. If no evidence of skin cancer exists, the procedure is completed. If the tissue tests positive for skin cancer, the precise location is marked and the physician removes another layer from the area where the cancer was detected. The same process is repeated until the doctor reaches a cancer-free layer.

Q: How long does the procedure take?

A: Each layer may take 30-60 minutes to process. As a result, Mohs surgery requires patience by both the patient and the physician. Patients should plan to spend half a day at our office.

Q: For what types of skin cancer is Mohs surgery recommended as a treatment?

A: Basal cell carcinomas, squamous cell carcinomas and lentigo maligna melanomas are the cancers most commonly treated by Mohs surgery. Less common tumors treated by Mohs surgery include adnexal neoplasms (including desmoplastic trichoepitheliomas), atypical fibroxanthomas, merkel cell carcinoma and dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP).

Q: If Mohs surgery has a 99% cure rate, why isn’t it used to treat all skin cancers?

A: There are certain and specific criteria that justify the utilization of Mohs surgery to treat a skin cancer. Dr. Papadopoulos or Dr. Kim will evaluate your specific case and suggest the treatment that is most appropriate.

Additional information on skin cancer and Mohs surgery:

Dr. Papadopoulos, Dr. Kim, Dr. Neckman, and Dr. Degesys treat patients from all around the metro Atlanta, GA, area. Their experience and outstanding work is well-known, so they treat patients from many areas including Cumming, Alpharetta, Macon, Stockbridge, Rome, Augusta, and beyond. Make the right decision and call Dr. Papadopoulos, Dr. Kim, Dr. Neckman, and Dr. Degesys for Mohs surgery.