Patient FAQs

Questions Frequently Asked by Patients

Is Mohs surgery the best treatment option for all skin cancers?
If you have any type of suspicious skin lesion you should seek evaluation by a dermatologist. If skin cancer is suspected, he or she may recommend and perform a biopsy. Mohs surgery may be recommended based on the type and location of the skin cancer, as well as other factors. We strictly adhere to the American Academy of Dermatology’s Appropriate Use Guidelines to determine if and when Moh’s is needed.

Is Mohs surgery more expensive than other types of skin cancer treatment?
Because it involves a special multi-step process, Mohs surgery is typically slightly more expensive than other skin cancer treatments. It is important, however, to consider the advantages of the Mohs technique (healthy tissue sparing capabilities, lower recurrence rate, etc.) in examining the total cost.

Will Mohs surgery be covered by my insurance plan?
Mohs surgery is covered by most insurance plans, including Medicare. Please enlist the aid of your employee benefits administrator or health insurance company to determine estimated out-of-pocket expenses.

Will Mohs surgery leave a scar?
All surgical procedures have the potential for some degree of visible scarring. The appearance of a post-Mohs surgical scar will depend on several factors, including size and location of the final defect, individual skin characteristics, and the reconstruction options available. You should keep in mind, however, that the tissue-sparing nature of the Mohs technique may result in a smaller, less noticeable scar than other skin cancer removal methods. We are often able to incorporate suture lines into the patient’s natural skin lines and folds. Most scars improve in appearance naturally over time, and future scar revision techniques may employed if necessary.

Where is the procedure performed?
All procedures are performed under local anesthesia in the comfort of our office suite.

How long should I expect it to last?
The duration includes waiting after removal to confirm the margins are clear of residual skin cancer, hence be prepared to stay up to 3 hours, depending on the size/ difficulty of the tumor.

How many layers will I need?
Typically, most cancers removed need one or two layers. Sometimes, cancers require more than this, depending on the unpredictable shape and location of the tumor.

Should I bring someone to drive me?
Yes. We recommend that you bring someone to drive you.

Do I need antibiotics?
Usually no. Unless the cancer is located on the nose or around the mouth, we typically do not use antibiotics.

Do I take all my normal medications?
Yes, stop only multivitamins, NSAID (like Motrin, Advil) and Asprin (unless your physician has suggested you take this) 2 weeks prior to the procedure. If you are on a blood thinner, such as Plavix or Coumadin, consult with our Surgical Coordinator and see our “Pre Op Handout”.