August 15, 2012
1 min read

Mohs' surgery effective, well-tolerated skin cancer treatment

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Mohs' surgery was shown to be safe and well tolerated by patients with skin cancer in a study.

Researchers conducted a multicenter, prospective, 4-week study on the treatment of skin cancer using Mohs' surgery on 1,550 patients (61% men; mean age, 69 years) with 1,792 tumors. Follow-up occurred on 95.3% of the tumors treated. A majority of the tumors were basal cell carcinoma (61%) or squamous cell carcinoma (31%) and were predominantly located on the head and neck. Eighty-two percent of defects were reconstructed.

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There were no major complications during Mohs' surgery or reconstruction; 2.6% minor primary postoperative complications occurred during the time of the study. Patients’ average peak pain level following surgery was 1.99 on a scale of 0 to 10. Most post-surgery complications were managed by Mohs' surgeons in their offices.

Strengths of the study included participation of 13 American College of Mohs Surgery (ACMS) member surgeons, while potential weaknesses were the absences of follow-up data for 4.7% of patients or inclusion of hypertension as a factor for postoperative bleeding, the researchers said.

“Mohs' surgery is proven as a highly effective, cost-effective, well-tolerated and extremely safe procedure for the treatment of skin cancer,” the researchers concluded. “This … study helps confirm the high degree of safety with which fellowship-trained, ACMS member Mohs' surgeons perform the procedure across a wide geographic range within the United States.”