Description of Procedure
The area will be cleansed with antiseptic. A local anesthetic will be injected into the area. Using a small scalpel, the top visible portion of the cancer will be removed. Next, another, deeper layer will be removed. The layer will be divided into sections. Each section will be color coded. This will allow the doctor to know exactly where the layer was in the skin.
These sections will be frozen and examined under a microscope for remaining cancer cells. If cancer is found at the edges of the removed layer, the doctor will go back to the precise section. Additional layers will be removed until all areas are cancer free. For larger wound areas, the wound will be closed with stitches, a skin flap, or a
procedure. Small, shallow wounds may heal without stitches.
At the Care Center
During your stay, the hospital staff will take steps to reduce your chance of infection such as:
- Washing their hands
- Wearing gloves or masks
- Keeping your incisions covered
There are also steps you can take to reduce your chances of infection such as:
- Washing your hands often and reminding visitors and healthcare providers to do the same
- Reminding your healthcare providers to wear gloves or masks
- Not allowing others to touch your incisions
After the procedure, you may be given pain medication and an antibiotic. You will be able to leave the same day.
When you return home, do the following to help ensure a smooth recovery:
- Be sure to attend any follow-up visits. Your doctor will monitor your condition.
- Keep in mind that it is normal for a scar to form. The appearance may improve over time.
Take steps to prevent skin cancer:
- Use sunscreens with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30.
- Protect your skin from the sun. For example, wear a shirt, wide brimmed hat, and sunglasses.
- Regularly check your skin for changes.