Surgical Dermatology - Frequently Asked Questions

What can I expect at my first appointment in the Mohs Unit?

Your first appointment will consist of a preoperative consultation. This consultation is critically important to assess, coordinate, plan and prepare you appropriately for surgery. Please understand that Mohs surgery is not usually performed on the consult day. We will make every effort to minimize trips but want to insure that the surgery is performed in the best way possible.
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What is a biopsy-confirmed diagnosis?

The term "biopsy-confirmed diagnosis" indicates that a biopsy or tissue sample of the suspected skin cancer has been taken and confirmed as skin cancer through microscopic analysis-pathology. A biopsy analysis provides information regarding the specific type of skin cancer and is necessary to determine which clinic day and time is required to provide appropriate treatment.
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What is a Mohs surgery?

Performed at U-M since 1955, Mohs Micrographic Surgery is an advanced treatment procedure for skin cancer that often offers the highest potential for cure--even if the skin cancer has been previously treated. This procedure is state-of-the-art treatment in which the physician serves as surgeon, pathologist and reconstructive surgeon. It relies on the accuracy of a microscope to trace and ensure removal of skin cancer down to its roots. This procedure allows dermatologists, trained in Mohs Surgery, to see beyond the visible disease, and to precisely identify and remove the entire tumor, leaving healthy tissue unharmed. This procedure is most often used in treating two of the most common forms of skin cancer: basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma.

The cure rate for Mohs Micrographic Surgery is the highest of all treatments for many skin cancers—often approaching 99 percent even if other forms of treatment have failed. This procedure - the most exact and precise method of tumor removal - minimizes the chance of regrowth and lessens the potential for scarring or disfigurement by conserving as much normal tissue as possible. To learn more about this procedure please visit the American College of Mohs Micrographic Surgery and Cutaneous Oncology Website.

Membership in the American College of Mohs Micrographic Surgery and Cutaneous Oncology assures that the highest standards of physician training in Mohs Micrographic Surgery has occurred with specialized post graduate fellowship training. The Mohs surgeons at the University of Michigan have received the most extensive post-graduate training consisting of 2 years of advanced fellowship training in both Mohs surgery and complex reconstruction of surgical wounds.
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Mohs patient information and forms


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