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Skin Cancer Surgery 

Areas of Expertise

Dr Rohde provides primary care skin cancer diagnosis and surgical excisions utilising mostly simple skin surgery by ellipse and flaps performed under a local anaesthetic in her rooms. All complex and specialised surgical treatments are referred to local Bowral surgeons, surgeons in Sydney, Goulburn and the Sydney Melanoma Unit.


Dr Rohde's approach is patient-centred. She supports her patients' management of melanoma or complex non-melanoma skin cancer, from appropriate referral to ensuring patients are seen and managed promptly and followed up for skin check surveillance, education, and prevention.


Skin cancer diagnosis can be stressful and usually prompts many questions about the seriousness of skin cancer and treatment options. Most people experience some anxiety and financial burden associated with skin cancer diagnosis. The good news is that most skin cancer can be successfully treated by simple surgical and some non-surgical treatment options to achieve a cure and excellent cosmetic outcome. There are several surgical options for skin cancer treatment depending on;


  • type of skin cancer depth and spread of skin cancer

  • anatomical location of skin cancer

  • associated medical risk factors

  • patient preferences

  • access to surgical service


The most common surgical treatment for non-melanoma skin cancer ( BCC, SCC) is a simple excision by an elliptical skin excision of skin cancer. A more complex surgical procedure for rare non-melanoma skin cancer, more significant, deeper skin cancer, or a skin cancer involving a specialised area such as the nose, eyelid, finger, lip, ear, face, or hand might warrant an excision by a skin flap by either a skin cancer doctor, general surgeon, plastic surgeon, ophthalmic surgeon, oculoplastic surgeon, oral surgeon, hand surgeon, head and neck surgeon or a dermatologist.


A specialised surgical procedure called Mohs surgery is on the rise for non-melanoma surgery for invasive, complicated or recurrent skin cancer, especially on specialised parts of the body such as the face, neck, nose, ears, and eyes for the best possible chance of clearance.


Melanoma skin cancer is diagnosed surgically by an excision biopsy, and diagnosis is confirmed by histopathology. The excision biopsy is usually a simple ellipse. The final surgical excision of melanoma is done as a second step, and depending on the factors mentioned above, an ellipse or a flap can excise wider margins.


Before the final excision is performed, the diagnosis of melanoma is confirmed by the excision biopsy pathology result. Depending on the type and depth of melanoma, the doctor will provide advice about final surgical management, risk of lymph node involvement, need for lymph node imaging and biopsy and discuss referral options and preference.


Along each step of the way, you will be supported and informed. There are non-surgical treatment options for superficial skin cancer, such as squamous and basal cell carcinoma, with excellent treatment outcomes, which are freely available, well tolerated and affordable. These are described separately.

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