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Occurring in the deepest layer of the skin, basal cell carcinomas often appear on the face looking like scars or prominent red bumps. Removing them with the aid of reconstructive facial surgery isn’t just a cosmetic concern—it can be the difference between life and death.
Like almost all cases of skin cancer, basal cell cancer is most frequently caused by sun exposure, both accumulated over time and from intense bouts that lead to damaged skin. Because your face is one of the areas of your body most frequently exposed to the sun, having cancerous lesions appear on your face is unfortunately quite normal for skin cancer.
Risk factors for basal cell skin cancer include:
When you need a basal cell carcinoma removed from your face, you want a surgeon who can remove all the cancerous tissue and leave your face with minimal scarring. Fortunately, the oculo-facial surgeons at the Morgenstern Center have plenty of experience removing basal cell growths and restoring the affected areas. You can browse their basal cell removal gallery to view specific examples.
The traditional way of removing cancerous growths from the skin is simple excisional surgery. For this type of surgery, the surgeon uses a scalpel to cut around the growth, taking care to remove all the cancerous tissue. For most body areas affected by skin cancer, excisional surgery works around 95 percent of the time.
However, there are issues with using excisional surgery on growths located on your face:
Fortunately, an alternative surgical technique exists in Mohs micrographic surgery.
This technique requires a specially trained doctor who removes thin layers of tissue from the tumor, examining each piece under a microscope and then proceeding to remove only those parts of the underlying tissue that have evidence of cancer. This process preserves your skin and has a success rate of 99%. After removal, reconstructive surgery can restore your skin to its previous appearance.