Skin cancer excision

After a skin lesion is biopsied and confirmed to be a superficial skin cancer, full removal is planned so that the cancer cannot reoccur at that same location. The surgery performed to fully remove a skin cancer is called a wide local excision. This is when a margin of normal, non-cancerous tissue is removed on all sides of the skin cancer. This ensures that local recurrence of the cancer is low.

Wide local excision of a skin cancer is an outpatient procedure. Some small skin cancers can even be excised in the office under local anesthetic. After the skin is numbed, a football shaped incision is made around the lesion, taking care to include a good margin of healthy tissue. The amount of tissue removed depends on the type of cancer. When the lesion is removed, it is oriented and sent to a pathologist to review. Pathology results are usually available within 2 weeks.

Make Appointment