How to Promote Healing after Mohs Skin Cancer Surgery

The development of Mohs micrographic surgery has been a significant advancement in the treatment of skin cancer. We are proud to offer this option to patients of our Sarasota office. Mohs is a precision technique that was designed to minimize the removal of healthy skin without compromising outcomes. The procedure is now known as the gold standard because it has an outstanding success rate for the complete removal of cancerous cells in a lesion. The results are often much more aesthetically pleasing than standard excision. However, this is not entirely determined by the procedure. What happens during recovery is also important.

Tips for Mohs Recovery

  • Minimize physical activity. Normally, we are encouraged to exercise at least 5 days a week. Right after Mohs surgery, though, it is better to avoid activities that increase blood flow. This is because increased blood flow creates a risk of bleeding from the surgical area. Too much movement can also stretch the tissues that are healing after cancer removal. For several weeks after Mohs surgery, the skin may not be as strong and stretchy as it will be after full recovery. Therefore, movement that can disrupt the surgical site should be avoided.
  • Avoid sun exposure. Any wound to the skin is susceptible to sun damage. Exposing the Mohs wound (or any wound) to sunlight or artificial UV light increases the risk of permanently dark scarring. Patients may go outdoors safely by wearing sunscreen, covering the wound with clothing or a bandage, and wearing a hat.
  • Avoid smoking. Patients scheduled for surgery are advised to quit before their procedure. Mohs patients should quit smoking as early before their procedure as they can. This allows the body time to prepare for unobstructed healing. Smoking inhibits oxygenation of tissues, which can slow the healing process.
  • Relax! Having skin cancer is stressful, we understand. However, it is important to take measures to manage stress and the stress hormones that go along with it. Stress hormones, like smoking, inhibit adequate healing. A casual walk can minimize stress, as can laughing and listening to favorite music.
  • Talk to your dermatologist about scarring. Once the Mohs wound has healed, a scar treatment program can begin. Your dermatologist can develop a plan that is ideal for you.

Learn more about Mohs surgery. Contact us at (941) 379-6647.

Posted in: Mohs Surgery

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