Skin Cancer Surgery
The following information sheet is intended to assist patients undergoing surgery for skin cancer with Dr Nicholas Lotz.
At least 2 in 3 Australians will be diagnosed with some form of skin cancer before the age of 70. Men are more likely to be affected and more likely to die from skin cancer than women. Early detection and treatment is vital to have the best outcomes.
Dr Lotz has treated thousands of skin cancer patients, and is able to advise you what type of surgery you require or arrange alternative treatment if your type of skin cancer does not require surgery.
A large number of these procedures can be performed under local anaesthetic in our office, whereas larger, more complicated cases will require surgery in hospital, usually as day surgery.
Cancers that are commonly treated include:
- BCC (Basal cell carcinoma)
- SCC (squamous cell carcinoma)
During the consultation Dr Lotz will describe the options for treatment available to you. Often a simple excision is all that is required, but if your skin cancer is larger then you may require a more complex reconstruction.
You will be given a detailed quotation prior to surgery which outlines all relevant costs.
It is important to let us know if you are on any blood thinning medications as you may need to stop them prior to your surgery.
You should also cease smoking a month before and a month after your surgery to reduce the risk of skin healing problems.
After the surgery
Most patients go home the same day. You will be given detailed instructions as to how to manage your dressings, if you can shower, and what activities to avoid.
You will be seen a week after surgery to remove any dressings, take out stitches, and be given advice as to how to manage the area. Dr Lotz will also discuss the best treatment in order to help minimise scarring.
Risks of skin cancer surgery
- Scarring (may require extra treatment or surgery)
- Incomplete removal of the cancer needing more surgery
- Nerve injury (numbness or motor nerve changes)
- Scars may be red for some time
- Poor healing, especially of skin grafts on the leg