Many skin lesions are removed under local anaesthestic (you remain awake during the whole procedure). The area surrounding the skin lesion is anaesthetised (made numb) so no pain is felt. The surgeon removes a small additional cuff of normal tissue surrounding the lesion to ensure complete removal of the lesion. The wound can be stitched together or covered with a skin graft or flap of adjacent skin. Alternatively, your surgeon may recommend MOHS (refer to “micrographic surgery”), which is also performed under local anaesthesia.
General anaesthesia may be required to remove and reconstruct more extensive skin cancers or if additional surgery is necessary, eg to remove lymph nodes.