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Surgical Skin Cancer and Mole Removal

Skin Check

At Medical Skin and Laser, our skin checks are aimed to detect skin cancer lesions earlier rather than later.


Sometimes we will be able to offer a non-surgical approach, for some types of early skin cancers. However, there will be times when we will suggest a surgical approach.


The main reasons for this are:

  1. Biopsy: to send a piece of tissue to the laboratory so specialty trained histological pathologists can examine it under the microscope. This tells us what it is, size, depth, and an indication of its nature (aggressive/non aggressive). 

  2. From this we can plan for Definitive surgery, where we aim to remove the complete cancer with normal skin margins surrounding it, as recommended by evidence based guidelines. This minimises recurrence and optimises long term outcomes.


Some surgical methods include:

  • Curettage and Cautery – For small, non aggressive superficial cancers, a small circular blade (curette) is used to remove the cancer lesion and the tissue around it under local anaesthetic. The area is then burnt with a specialised device, to destroy any residual cancer cells. 

  • Cryosurgery – Liquid nitrogen is sprayed or held onto lesions with a cotton bud. This causes the destruction of the abnormal skin cells on the top layers of the skin. There will often be some resultant redness, itchiness, blistering and peeling of the treated skin. It is mainly used for small, pre-cancerous sun spots (solar keratoses/actinic keratoses). 

  • Simple Excision Skin Cancer Surgery – Very well tolerated and performed under local anaesthetic, the skin lesion is removed along with a small amount of surrounding skin. This skin is sent to our laboratory for analysis.

  • Wide Excision Skin Cancer Surgery – A wider and deeper excision to remove an additional portion of the normal skin surrounding the lesion is utilised to minimise cancer recurrence and optimise long term outcome. This is the gold-standard treatment for melanoma.

  • Flap or graft closure – Some parts of the body such as the face, scalp or lower leg, may require using a flap or a skin graft. A flap is a technique where nearby skin is moved to help cover a place where the lesion has been removed. A skin graft may be a partial or full-thickness section of normal skin removed from another part of the body, and placed on the defect resulting from the removal of the skin cancer. Our experienced nursing staff assist in changing your dressings until complete healing.

Regardless of what type of surgery you undergo, Medical Skin and Laser optimses your cosmetic outcome by providing support with the basic skin care, healing protocols and access to our state-of-the-art lasers and aesthetic devices. 

Usually surgery will be curative and no further treatment, apart from regular skin-checks, may be necessary.

Factors for Skin Cancer Surgery:

A variety of factors are used to determine whether or not a patient is a good candidate for skin cancer surgery. Beyond general health, our doctors consider:

  • Type of tumour

  • Size and location

  • Grade and stage of tumour

  • Patient’s medical conditions

  • Patient’s age

  • Patients Allergies/Medicications


At Medical Skin and Laser, we work with you presenting all options for treatment of your skin cancer. We aim to make sure you are comfortable every step of the way.

Scientist Using Microscope

Surgical SKIN CANCER and MOLE Removal

Your surgically removed skin is analysed and reviewed by leading Dermatology Histopathologists specialising in Skin Cancer 

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