Expect Questions About the Appropriate Use of Mohs Surgery


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Mohs surgery can be an effective treatment option for nonmelanoma skin cancer, as well as for more rare but aggressive skin cancers. In addition, Mohs can be particularly helpful to treat patients with skin cancers that have recurred,” Brett M. Coldiron, MD, Clinical Associate Professor of Dermatology at the University of Cincinnati, told The ASCO Post. Overall, he summarized, “Mohs micrographic surgery offers the highest cure rate, with the smallest possible defect, at a very reasonable cost.”

To answer questions from patients about whether they might be good candidates for Mohs surgery, physicians can turn to the Mohs surgery appropriate use criteria document, a resource for dermatologists and other physicians who encounter skin cancer in their practices.

To develop the appropriate use criteria, the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), in collaboration with the American College of Mohs Surgery, the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association, and the American Society for Mohs Surgery, reviewed, categorized, and rated the appropriateness of Mohs surgery for 270 scenarios in which Mohs surgery is often considered. Dr. Coldiron was a member of the task force that developed the appropriate use criteria and is President-Elect of the AAD.

Free App

The criteria were published in both the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery. In addition, “the Academy has developed a free app for the Mohs appropriate use criteria, which includes decision support on the appropriateness of Mohs surgery for 270 unique scenarios; guided navigation through tumor and patient characteristics; color-coded body maps for high-, medium-, and low-risk areas; supplemental clinical algorithms; and a quick reference guide that can be shared with referring physicians and patients,” Dr. Coldiron said.

For more information about the app or to download the appropriate use criteria, visit the American Academy of Dermatology website at www.aad.org. ■


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