Surgical dermatology involves diagnosing and treating cosmetic and medical skin conditions that may also affect the mucous membranes, nails, hair, and veins. Doctors may use a variety of surgical and reconstructive techniques to resolve the patient’s concern. Examples of dermatologic surgery procedures include curettage, reconstructive surgery and skin grafts, cryosurgery, and laser surgery. Today, many dermatologic surgeries are minimally invasive procedures that are carried out under local or regional anesthesia. They are designed to optimize safety and favorable results while minimizing downtime.

Surgical Dermatology Defined

Surgical dermatology is a type of surgery that uses techniques from dermatology and plastic surgery to improve the skin’s health and appearance. Any cosmetic skin procedure, such as reconstruction or removing skin lesions, that requires incisions or anesthesia is an example of surgical dermatology.

Surgical Dermatology Services

Surgical dermatology services are often performed for medical or aesthetic reasons. The procedures often involve removing:

  • benign moles
  • cysts
  • lipomas
  • skin tags (fibromas and papillomas)
  • warts
  • basal cell skin cancers and melanomas

Dermatological surgery can also reduce, revise, or eliminate:

  • acne scars
  • facial blood vessels
  • vascular hemangiomas and birthmarks
  • keloids and scar tissue
  • injured, diseased, or otherwise damaged fingernails and toenails

What to Expect During Recovery

After your dermatological surgery, the duration and degree of healing required will vary from procedure to procedure. Many wounds take a few weeks to heal, but every person recovers differently. Generally speaking, patients may go home the same day their procedure ends and return to work and most normal activities right away. You may experience discomfort, bruising, or swelling, and you may need to take over-the-counter pain medications and keep a bandage on the operation site as per your doctor’s instructions. You are also likely to experience scarring.

Aftercare may include:

  • trying not to touch, bump, or disturb your wound
  • avoiding strenuous activity and exercise until you receive your doctor’s approval
  • not wearing makeup near your wound
  • staying out of the pool, lake, ocean, hot tub, or bathtub
  • avoiding the sun and UV light
  • wearing sunscreen and sun protection (like a hat or long-sleeved clothing)
  • keeping your wound bandaged and clean
  • keeping your wound dry or moisturized, as directed

The Importance of a Professional Consultation

Before having dermatological surgery, you should speak to your doctor about your condition and your medical or aesthetic goals. Your surgeon should explain the details of the procedure and any potential risks during your consultation. An expert surgeon will help you select the right treatment, prioritize your care, and do everything possible to ensure that your outcome will be successful.

Schedule a Consultation with Our Surgeons

Surgical dermatology involves many procedures that can help you feel more confident about the health and appearance of your skin. Our specialists in Westford, MA, are committed to providing you with state-of-the-art treatments and care that will help you achieve your aesthetic goals. To discover how dermatological surgery can improve the condition of your skin and your outlook on life, schedule a consultation with our doctors today.