Mohs Surgery on Nose: Everything You Need to Know

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a patient had Mohs surgery on the nose

Mohs Surgery on Nose is a highly specialized procedure used to treat skin cancer on the nose. It's an effective way of removing precancerous or cancerous lesions from delicate areas without causing too much damage.

In this article, we'll explore different types of Mohs micrographic surgery for noses, how they are performed, what conditions can be treated with them, and if they are painful.

Read on to learn all about Mohs surgery on the nose so you can make an informed decision should you ever need it in the future.

Why is Mohs Surgery Used on the Nose?

Mohs surgery is the preferred treatment for skin cancer on the nasal area due to its high rate of success and minimal risk.

This procedure involves removing thin layers of tissue one at a time and examining them under a microscope until all of the cancerous cells have been removed.

The advantage of Mohs surgery over other forms of skin cancer removal is that it allows for more precise removal with less damage to healthy surrounding tissue.

What Does Mohs Surgery Involve?

The process begins with numbing the area around the tumor so that no pain or discomfort will be felt during surgery.

A local anesthetic may also be used in some cases to further reduce any potential discomfort. Once numb, your surgeon will use a scalpel to carefully remove thin layers of skin containing the tumor until all visible signs are gone and only healthy tissue remains.

Each layer is then examined under a microscope by your dermatologist or pathologist in order to ensure that all traces of cancer have been removed before closing up the wound with stitches or sutures if necessary.

Benefits Of Mohs Surgery On The Nose

  • Precisely targets only affected tissues while leaving healthy ones untouched, resulting in better outcomes for patients
  • Done in stages rather than all at once, leading to shorter recovery times and minimized scarring
  • Ideal for facial procedures involving cancers located near delicate features like eyes, nose, and ears

Risks Of Mohs Surgery On The Nose

Risks may include delayed healing, scarring, numbness or tingling in the area that is treated, or changes in facial appearance due to removal of tissue from the nose area.

BCCs of the nose can invade cartilaginous structures, mucous membranes and subcutaneous tissue, making them more difficult to treat than other types of skin cancer

The success and effectiveness of Mohs skin surgery depends largely on how much cancerous tissue needs to be removed and how deep the cancer has penetrated into underlying layers of skin and bone.

Before deciding it is right for you, talk with a Mohs surgeon about all possible risks involved, so that you can make an informed decision about what type of procedure might be best for you and your situation.

Different Types

Different types of Mohs surgery can be used to remove these cancers depending on the location and size, so it’s important to research which type would best suit your needs.

Mohs Surgery on Side of Nose

Typically used for small tumors that are located near sensitive structures such as eyes and nostrils. During this type of surgery, a doctor will remove very thin layers from around the tumor in order to ensure that all cancerous cells are removed while preserving healthy tissue surrounding it.

Mohs Surgery on Nose Tip

This procedure is often recommended when there is concern about residual cancer near highly visible areas such as the nose tip. By removing tissue in thin layers rather than one large chunk, doctors can more accurately determine which areas contain malignant cells and ensure they haven’t left any tumor cells behind.

This may also involve reconstructive surgery such as skin grafting if necessary.

Mohs Surgery for Basal Cell Carcinoma on the Nose

An effective treatment option for those with basal cell carcinomas located anywhere on their nose or face due to its ability to precisely target only affected areas without damaging nearby healthy tissues or organs.

During this procedure, multiple layers are taken off one by one until no more abnormal cells remain in order to completely eradicate any trace of cancer from the area being treated.

Mohs Surgery on the Bridge of the Nose

Often recommended when treating larger tumors that may be difficult to reach using other methods due to their location, which is along bony ridges or cartilage-covered surfaces that require special attention during removal in order not to cause damage to adjacent tissues or organs during the treatment process.

In these cases, Mohs surgeons use advanced mapping techniques combined with microscopic examination in order to accurately identify and remove only affected tissues while leaving behind unaffected ones intact.

Mohs Surgery for Larger Sections of the Nose

It involves taking out larger sections than normal so they can access deeper parts within facial structure where some cancers tend to hide themselves, making them harder to detect through traditional methods like biopsies alone.

Large Mohs procedures allow physicians gain better understanding how far spread tumor has become allowing them plan most appropriate course action based results.

How Is the Surgery Performed?

The first step in Mohs surgery on the nose is preparing the patient for the procedure. This usually includes administering a local anesthetic to numb the area around the lesion, or tumor that needs to be removed.

The doctor then marks or outlines the perimeter of the lesion with a needle and ink, so he or she knows exactly where to begin and end when removing each layer of tissue.

Once prepped, the surgeon removes a thin layer of tissue from the lesion and its edges (referred to as “margins”). This tissue is taken to a lab for examination under a microscope.

The surgeon will map out where each sample was taken from by marking it on what is called a “Mohs map” that depicts an outline of your facial features (e.g., eyes) and your tumor area.

If any abnormal cancerous cells are present in this first specimen, additional specimens are collected in successive layers until no more cancer cells remain or until all margins indicate complete removal of visible tumor (whichever comes first).

Following completion of Mohs surgery on the nose, reconstructive processes can begin immediately if desired by the patient; typically performed by plastic and/or reconstructive surgeons as part of their practice after they certify in Mohs surgery.

These procedures assist in repairing areas damaged due to removal or repair complex tumors or defects thought risky using other surgical options due to their location or size.

Mohs Surgery on the Nose: What Conditions Can Be Treated?

Mohs surgery on the nose can be used to treat both basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). BCC is typically found on areas of sun-exposed skin, such as around the eyes or ears, but it can also occur on other parts of the face like the nose.

SCC usually appears in areas with chronic sun exposure or trauma, but again may appear anywhere on your face including your nose. In either case, Mohs surgery provides an effective way to remove these tumors without damaging nearby tissues or causing significant scarring or disfigurement after healing has occurred.

Overall, Mohs Surgery offers a safe and effective way for treating many different kinds of skin cancers located on your nose while minimizing damage done to surrounding healthy tissues during the removal process so you don't have to worry about extensive scarring afterwards when healing occurs.

Is the Surgery Painful?

The surgery is typically done with a local anesthetic, so patients are usually awake during the procedure and experience only mild discomfort. 

The entire procedure can cause some minor discomfort due to local anesthesia injections but most people report feeling minimal pain during this procedure compared with other surgical treatments for skin cancers such as excisional biopsy or cryosurgery (freezing).

Because Mohs allows for precise removal of only what needs to be removed without damaging surrounding areas, it helps minimize scarring which makes recovery easier both physically and emotionally for many patients who undergo this type of treatment option for their facial skin cancers.

Mohs Surgery on the Nose to Remove Basal Cell Carcinoma

The success rate for Mohs surgery in treating BCC is very high; it has been estimated that up to 99% of cases can be cured with this method alone. For primary (previously untreated) tumors, the 5-year recurrence rate is 2.1%, while for recurrent BCC it is 5.2%

During the surgery, a thin layer of tissue containing the tumor is removed from the affected area and examined under a microscope for any remaining cancer cells.

If any are found, another layer of tissue will be removed until all visible signs of cancer have been eliminated. This process can take several hours or even days depending on how extensive the BCC was initially.

Mohs surgery allows for minimal scarring and maximum preservation of healthy tissues when compared to other methods used to treat BCC on the nose such as excisional surgeries or radiation therapy. This can result in improved cosmetic outcomes following treatment with this method when compared to other options available.

Mohs surgery on the nose is a safe and effective way to remove basal cell carcinoma with minimal scarring.

Now let's explore how Mohs surgery can be used to treat squamous cell carcinoma.

Mohs Surgery on the Nose to Treat Squamous Cell Carcinoma

The nose is particularly vulnerable to SCC due to its prominent location and exposure to ultraviolet radiation from sun exposure.

When SCC develops on or near the nose, Mohs surgery may be recommended as an effective treatment option.

Mohs surgeons are able to precisely target only affected areas during their procedures which helps minimize damage done by cutting away too much of the healthy tissue and reduces the risk of infection or recurrence rate after healing has completed.

Mohs Surgery provides an excellent option for those who require treatment for end-of-nose squamous cell carcinoma due to its ability to provide accurate results with minimal invasion and scarring when compared with other treatments available.

Skin Grafting Technique

Skin grafting is a common technique used in Mohs surgery on the nose. This procedure involves taking skin from one area of the body and transplanting it to another area.

Skin grafts can be taken from the upper forehead with an incision hidden in the hairline, or a composite graft of skin, fat, and cartilage can be obtained from the ear and placed into the nose wound. The surgeon will then use sutures to secure it in place until healing occurs.

The purpose of this procedure is to provide coverage for wounds that cannot heal on their own due to size or depth. It also helps restore normal appearance after Mohs surgery has been performed on areas such as around the eyes or nose where cosmetic results are important. 

In some cases, tissue expanders may also be used prior to skin grafting if there is not enough donor site available for harvesting healthy tissue for transplantation onto other areas of your face or body.

Reconstructive Procedure after the Surgery

There are several techniques available after the surgery, depending on the size and location of the defect left behind by removal of BCC or SCC.

In general, smaller defects may require only simple suturing techniques for closure; however, larger defects may require more complex reconstruction methods such as local flaps or skin grafting.

Local flaps involve moving adjacent healthy tissue into place in order to cover up any remaining defect after Mohs surgery has been completed. 

Skin grafting is another technique that can be used when necessary; this involves taking small pieces of healthy skin from other areas of your body and transplanting them onto your nose in order to fill in any gaps created by tumor removal during Mohs surgery.

Both local skin flap procedures and skin grafting are typically performed under general anesthesia so you won’t feel any pain during these procedures.

The results achieved with both local flap procedures and skin grafting depend largely upon how well they were performed; if done correctly, you should end up with an aesthetically pleasing result that looks natural following completion of your reconstructive procedure(s).

Since both techniques involve using existing healthy tissues from elsewhere on your body rather than artificial materials or implants, there is less risk for complications down the road due to infection or rejection issues associated with foreign objects being placed inside your body.

Mohs Surgery on Nose: FAQs

How long does it take to heal from Mohs surgery on nose?

The length of time it takes to heal from the surgery may vary depending on the size and location of the wound, but typically recovery is completed within two weeks post procedure. 

Stitches are usually removed within 7-10 days for wounds on the face or neck, and 14 days for wounds on other parts of the body. The normal healing process involves a period of skin contraction, which often peaks four to six weeks after the surgery.

Is Mohs surgery on nose painful?

Mohs surgery on the nose is typically not painful. The procedure involves numbing the area with a local anesthetic, so patients should only feel minimal discomfort during the procedure. 

Some soreness and swelling may occur but can be managed with over-the-counter pain medications or cold compresses. Patients may also experience temporary numbness in the area where Mohs surgery was performed; however, this usually resolves within a few weeks after treatment.

Do you need plastic surgery after Mohs surgery on nose?

No, plastic surgery is not typically necessary after Mohs surgery on the nose. 

However, depending on the size and location of the lesion that was removed, a reconstructive procedure may be recommended to restore symmetry and improve aesthetic outcomes. 

In some cases, this could involve plastic surgery techniques such as skin grafting or tissue rearrangement. It is important to discuss your individual needs with your dermatologist in order to determine if any additional procedures are necessary for optimal results.


Dr. Mendese' team of dermatologists

At Dermatology & Skin Health, we understand the importance of feeling comfortable in your own skin. That's why our team specializes in Mohs surgery on noses to help you achieve a healthier and more aesthetically pleasing appearance. 

Our experienced providers offer personalized care and cutting-edge treatments that will leave you looking and feeling great. Contact us today for more information or to schedule an appointment - let us help you get back to being confident in your own skin.

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