The Skinny: Moh’s Micrographic Surgery

A thorough and highly effective way to systematically remove skin cancer on the face and ears

Mohs micrographic surgery is the treatment of choice for basal cell carcinomas and squamous cell carcinomas occurring on the face and the ears.

Moh’s is typically performed as an outpatient procedure using local anesthetic.  Mohs is a multi-step process removing small pieces of tissue until the tumor is removed.  It allows for the selective removal of the skin cancer maximizing tissue preservation and minimizing recurrence providing a nearly 98% cure rate.

Mohs micrographic surgeons are dermatologists who continue their education for a 1-2 year fellowship in pathology and reconstructive surgery.  This additional experience allows them to become members of the American College of Moh’s surgery and this complete over 1,000 cases per year.

The procedure:
1) The Mohs surgeon removes any visible area of skin cancer plus a thin layer surrounding the lesion under local anesthesia.
2) The specimen is processed and placed onto slides where the Mohs surgeon examines the tissue under a microscope looking for any additional cancerous roots or cells
4) If any tumor is still visible under the microscope, another thin layer in the direction of the root viewed is then removed and tested.
5) The process is repeated until all margins of the tumor are clear
6) Once the removal is complete, the Moh’s surgeon then determines the best method for closure and reconstruction of the wound to achieve the best cosmetic results with minimal scarring

Mohs and the reconstruction procedures are typically covered by insurance.

To read more on Moh’s Micrographic Surgery, visit:
retief_portraitDr. Carla Retief
Dr Retief is a surgical dermatologist including MOHs Surgery and other surgical treatments of skin cancer.  Dr. Retief is a fellowship trained Mohs Micrographic surgeon with over 15 years of experience in reconstruction and has performed over 3000 cases to date.  Retief is an American College of Mohs Surgery (ACMS) fellow and has undergone rigorous fellowship training; fellows are required to complete an intensive 1 or 2-year post-residency.




To Learn More about Mohs’s Micrographic Surgery and procedures for other types of skin cancer,
please call our office at (615) 454-9356

BrianThe Skinny: Moh’s Micrographic Surgery