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Mohs surgery is a highly revered surgical technique for treating skin cancer. It is known for its track record of high cure rates and tissue preservation capabilities. Those who have been diagnosed with skin cancer and are considering Mohs surgery may wonder how long they can wait before undergoing the procedure. 

Timing is an important consideration when it comes to Mohs surgery, but the urgency may vary depending on the type and stage of the skin cancer. Certain factors can help patients determine how soon they need to undergo the procedure. The team of dermatologists at Certified Dermatology has compiled a list of considerations for prospective Mohs patients. 

Factors to consider

The Type of Skin Cancer

Different types of skin cancer have varying growth rates and aggressiveness. Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), the most common types of skin cancer, are generally slow-growing and have a lower risk of metastasis. However, melanoma, a more aggressive form of skin cancer, requires prompt treatment due to its higher potential for spreading to other parts of the body.

Tumor Size and Depth

The size and depth of the tumor can influence the urgency of Mohs surgery. Larger or deeper tumors may require immediate attention to prevent further progression and increase the chances of successful removal during the surgery.

Rapidly Changing or Growing Lesions

If you notice a skin lesion that is rapidly changing in size, shape, or color, it is essential to seek medical attention promptly. Rapid growth or changes in appearance may indicate a more aggressive form of skin cancer that requires immediate treatment.

Patient Health and Medical History

Your overall health and medical history also play a role in determining the timing of Mohs surgery. If you have underlying health conditions that need to be addressed before the procedure or if you are taking certain medications that can affect the surgery or healing process, your healthcare provider may recommend addressing these factors first.

Schedule Availability

In some cases, scheduling constraints may affect the timing of Mohs surgery. Mohs surgery is typically performed by specialized dermatologists, and their availability may vary. It is important to discuss your scheduling preferences and any concerns with your healthcare provider to find a suitable timeline for the procedure.

What is the takeaway?

The timing of Mohs surgery depends on various factors, including the type and stage of the skin cancer, tumor size and depth, patient health, and medical history. While it is best to undergo the procedure as soon as possible after the diagnosis, it is important to refer to a certified practitioner to assess your individual case and determine the optimal timing. Remember, early detection and prompt treatment are key to successful outcomes in skin cancer treatment, so do not hesitate to seek medical attention if you notice any concerning skin changes.

At Certified Dermatology, we carry out thorough assessments of our patients to help guide them through the treatment process. Contact us to set up a private consultation and learn more about Mohs surgery. 

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