Skin Cancer Surgery
A comprehensive approach to health and aesthetics
A skin cancer diagnosis can be frightening. First and foremost, you want to know that the cancer can be completely eradicated and prevented from spreading or returning. However, in the back of your mind, you are probably also wondering how you will look after your cancer treatment. Will removal of the cancer affect your appearance in any way? When the tumour is very large or in a visible area like the face, this concern can be amplified.
The primary goal of skin cancer surgery is to remove malignant tumours from the skin in order to eradicate the cancer and stop the cancer spreading to other areas of the body. In some cases, reconstruction procedures may also be needed after skin cancer surgery to correct any defects the excision of the tumour may have left behind. Dr Paul Gerarchi is experienced in both skin cancer treatment and reconstruction and offers state-of-the-art surgical techniques to ensure you receive the best possible cosmetic results, as well as full eradication of the cancer.
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” Lao Tzu
An Example Of Our Work
The results you deserve
There are two basic types of skin cancer which Dr Gerarchi treats:
Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common tumour to affect the face. Also known as a “rodent ulcer,” this tumour slowly eats away at healthy tissue and can grow quite large. Basal cell carcinoma is usually caused by sun exposure. Because it grows very slowly and rarely spreads, it responds very well to early treatment.
Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is another type of skin cancer which can appear on the face or on other areas frequently exposed to UV rays. Like basal cell carcinomas, these types of tumours are highly treatable when they are diagnosed early. However, they do have a higher recurrence rate, which means the skin must be evaluated regularly after a diagnosis to ensure the cancer does not return.
Meeting your surgeon
Your skin cancer surgery may involve any of the following surgical techniques, depending on the size of the tumour:
- Excision through linear closure
- Local or regional skin flaps
- Skin or cartilage grafts
Both your skin cancer physician and Dr Gerarchi can work together on your surgery to ensure the highest level of treatment and the best cosmetic results. Dr Gerarchi can also perform reconstructive surgery following skin cancer surgery to produce a better aesthetic result once your treatment is completed.
Your skin cancer removal procedure
Local anaesthesia is sufficient for most skin cancer surgeries, with or without sedation. This reduces risk during and following the procedure and simplifies the recovery process. Procedure times vary considerably, with simple procedures taking as little as 15 minutes and more complex surgeries taking up to three hours
In some cases, particularly reconstruction of the nose, you may require more than one surgical procedure to achieve the best cosmetic results. Dr Gerarchi will guide you as to the best approach to suit your unique circumstances.
After your skin cancer surgery, you will likely be able to return to regular activities immediately, or on the following day. Swelling and bruising after your treatment is commonly experienced, but these side effects are typically minor and usually only last a few days.
Sutures used to close the incision may be removed by Dr Gerarchi within a week of the procedure. Wound care instructions will be provided to ensure proper wound healing and minimal visible scarring.
Managing your pain and recovery
Many patients report they experience very little discomfort following skin cancer surgery.
If you do, oral pain medications, either over the counter or by prescription, can be recommended to help you remain comfortable after the procedure.
A cancer diagnosis can be very frightening. Unfortunately, the bright sun in Australia leads to an overwhelmingly high number of skin cancer cases in this country every year. Dr Gerarchi provides high quality patient care and state-of-the-art surgical techniques to provide you the best possible cosmetic result after skin cancer surgery. To learn more, contact our office today.