Surgical Dermatology

Surgical Dermatology Newport Beach | Orange County

Surgical dermatology procedures may be necessary in specific medical conditions such as skin cancer, facial reconstruction following Mohs surgery, skin excisions, and nail surgery.

Skin Cancer

Skin cancer involves abnormal changes in the cell structure in the external layer of the skin. Skin cancers are by far the most common types of cancer, accounting for nearly three out of four cancer diagnoses. People in the age group of 45 and 54 are more at risk, but the disease is being increasingly diagnosed in younger people.

Treatment for Melanoma

Melanoma skin cancer may be treated surgically where the entire melanoma is surgically excised along with a margin of the healthy looking skin. Sometimes the surgery may be combined with chemotherapy, which involves the use of medications to stop or reduce the cancerous cell growth. Immunotherapy may also be used, which can help improve the patient’s immune system to fight the disease.

Surgical Excision of Melanoma

Melonoma can be removed entirely along with a border of normal looking skin through surgical excision. The breadth of the border of healthy skin removed will depend on the severity of the melanoma. Extra tissue will also be removed from underneath the melanoma.

If the size of the melanoma is small, it will require minor excisions that can be closed with sutures, but large excisions on the hands, feet or face may need skin grafting after surgery. The surgery may be performed under local or general anesthesia, depending on the extent of excision involved.

Mohs Micrographic Surgery and Facial Reconstruction

Mohs micrographic surgery or MMS involves removal of micro layers of skin tissue using a microscope. The surgeon will remove ultra-thin layers of tissue in an incremental manner with this technique. This advanced technique ensures that the entire diseased tissue is removed without harming the healthy tissue. Mohs surgery has the lowest cancer recurrence rate and the highest preservation of normal tissue.

Mohs surgery should be performed by an experienced dermatologic surgeon, and thereafter the patient will usually be referred to a plastic surgeon for facial reconstruction. This becomes necessary because a hole or depression in the skin will remain following lesion removal with Mohs surgery. Reconstructive surgery can remove the disfigurement and repair the damaged site to restore the natural appearance of the skin.

Surgical Nail Removal

A severe or recurring fungal infection in the nail can be treated with surgical nail removal procedure. The procedure may involve full or partial removal of the nail, depending on the extent of infection. The surgeon will apply a local anesthetic injection in the affected finger or toe for this procedure. Thereafter, the skin around the nail folds will be loosened and the nail or a part of it will be separated using a surgical tool.

In some cases, the surgeon may destroy the nail matrix in order to prevent the nail from growing back and causing infection in the future. This can be achieved with the application of a chemical in the cuticle area once the nail plate has been removed.