Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer. It mostly affects skin that’s frequently exposed to sunlight, but it can also occur in skin that is not frequently exposed. The risk of skin cancer can be reduced by avoiding or limiting exposure to ultraviolet rays.
If you have noticed a lesion that may be cancerous, it’s vital that you contact your doctor. Catching skin cancer early on gives the person the greatest chance for a successful treatment.
Treatment Options for Skin Cancer
Once the skin cancer is diagnosed, treatment methods are recommended depending on the type of skin cancer, the stage of the cancer, and its effects on the skin.
The following options may be suggested:
• Topical medications: Work by stimulating the body’s immune system and causing it to produce interferon, which attacks the cancer.
• Electrodessication and curettage: Here, the treatment area is numbed and scraped with a sharp instrument. The edge is then cauterized with an electric needle. This treatment leaves behind a scar.
• Surgical excision: The tumor is numbed and a portion of the tissue is removed along with the tumor. Sutures are used to close the wound.
• Mohs micrographic surgery: A form of surgical excision where a small margin of normal tissue is removed along with the tumor. This is repeated until all traces of the cancer have been removed.
• Radiation therapy: High-dose radiation is delivered to the tumor and the surrounding area.
• Other treatments: Many other methods are available, including cryosurgery, laser surgery, photodynamic therapy, and oral medication.
Skin cancer can affect any part of the skin. It becomes more of an issue when it affects the facial skin, since this skin is constantly exposed and obvious.
Many cancerous lesions are treated effectively with topical or non-surgical treatments when detected early. But when the cancer is advanced, it requires surgical excision. Because scars and defects may impact facial appearance, skin reconstruction is necessary to restore the skin that is damaged due to the cancer and its treatment.
Skin Reconstruction After Skin-Cancer Removal
Reconstructive surgery is all about repairing and restoring. Plastic surgeons use reconstructive surgery to improve and restore a natural appearance and to minimize the visual impact of a defect or wound left over after skin-cancer removal.
Skin reconstruction after the treatment of skin cancer is a delicate and specialized type of surgery. It aims to return the patient’s facial form and function to as close to normal as possible. The goal of skin reconstruction is to avoid a permanent reminder of the cancer in order to help a patient lead a normal life again.
The procedure typically involves harvesting a tissue graft or flap from another area of the face or body and then moving that tissue to the area where there is a defect. This process requires great care. The exact type of graft or flap technique to be used will depend on the recommendation of Dr. Wali.
Meet with Dr. Wali to Learn More
Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Dev Wali will be happy to discuss skin reconstruction in greater detail as part of a consultation at our office. Contact us today to schedule your informative consultation.