Skin cancer affects millions of people each year but, if diagnosed early enough, is fairly easy to cure. The most important, proactive steps you can take to protect yourself against skin cancer are to diligently use sun block and to carefully monitor any changes on your skin with the assistance of your primary care physician. Take note of any changes in the color or shape of moles, or a mole that grows or bleeds; these kinds of changes should be immediately checked out by your primary physician or a dermatologist.

Each year, Dr. Sati, MD, treats many patients with these early stages of skin cancer, and is highly effective in achieving the best possible results. If you have been diagnosed with skin cancer, he will make every effort to see you promptly and perform treatment in a timely manner.

 

About the procedure:

While each case is different, depending on the size and location of the nevus or nevi (mole or moles) being removed, a local anesthetic tends to be sufficient for most patients. The surgery is an outpatient procedure, possibly requiring a 24-hour stay for more intensive cases.

 

Post- operative instructions:

  • Following the operation, the incisions will be covered by bandages or paper tape. If more complex surgery is required, Dr. Sati, MD, will go through the details with you prior to the operation.
  • The bandages must stay in place for two days, after which you may take a shower. The dressings over the incisions can get wet.
  • The dressings need to stay on the incisions until your follow-up appointment.
  • Light exercise, such as walking or using a stationary bike, may be resumed after at least two weeks.

 

The healing process:

  • Following the procedure, the affected areas will be swollen, bruised and sore. Pain medication may be used as prescribed whenever experiencing discomfort. Swelling and bruising will take several weeks to subside. Scars from the procedure generally fade after one year.
  • Most patients take a few days off work.
  • Occasionally, patients experience drainage from the incisions, which may last a few weeks. To protect your clothes, place a piece of gauze or a cotton sanitary napkin over the affected areas.
  • The incisions may be raised and red for several weeks.
  • The final results of the procedure can be judged three to six months after the operation, although the final healed results may not be apparent until approximately one year after the procedure.

 

Follow-up appointments:

  • First follow-up: Within one week of the operation
  • Second follow-up: Three weeks after the operation
  • Subsequent appointments are typically scheduled for three months after the procedure.