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Skin Cancer Treatments

Skin Cancer Treatment Methods

AdobeStock_39137081-[Converted]There are four different treatment methods used in treating skin cancers. Of course, we use the most conservative but effective approach in all treatments. Every patient’s case is unique; therefore treatment options will depend on the patient and the severity of the skin cancer(s).

  • Topical treatment: Aldara (imiquimod), Efudex, 5-FU (5-flurourocil), Solaraze- these are the most common topical treatments available. These are prescribed topical medications to be applied by the patient at home. The treatment protocols vary, but usually take 3-6 weeks to complete. This treatment is mainly prescribed in the winter months due to sensitivity to the sun and downtime needed to achieve effective results.
  • ED&C (electrodessication and curettage): Other known as the scrape and burn technique – this surgical treatment is an acceptable and effective treatment that usually does not limit your activity level. The wound does takes longer to heal than an excision because it is an “open” wound and can leave a small white circular scar.
  • Surgical Excision– complete removal with margin control—usually requires sutures and limits activity level. Most patients will need to come back to have the sutures removed.
  • MOHS– Mohs is a specialized micrographic skin cancer surgery performed by dermatologists that are specially trained in Mohs surgery. This surgical technique is not indicated for all skin cancers. Mohs is a tissue sparing procedure. Mohs surgery is usually indicated for delicate areas such as the eyes, lips, ears, and scalp. Areas or tumors that have a high recurrence rate, or will need special reconstruction. Mohs was founded by Dr. Fredric Mohs. This procedure has the highest cure rate out of all the treatments noted for skin cancer because they take tiny pieces of tissue from the area (called stages) and process the tissue and look at it under the microscope. This process is repeated until all the cancer/tumor is gone. Mohs surgery is not performed at Georgia Dermatology. A patient is referred out to a local Mohs surgeon.


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