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Why Are Mohs Surgery Scars So Big? Understanding the Impact on Healing and Appearance

why are mohs surgery scars so big

Mohs surgery, renowned for its high success rate in treating skin cancer, particularly on delicate areas like the face and nose, often leaves patients wondering, "Why are Mohs surgery scars so big?" This question arises especially when they compare the post-operative scars with their initial expectations. The size and appearance of scars post-Mohs surgery can vary significantly, influenced by several factors related to the surgery's meticulous process and the body's healing response.

The Nature of Mohs Surgery

Mohs surgery is a precise surgical technique used to treat skin cancer, with each layer of tissue being meticulously removed and examined until only cancer-free tissue remains. This method ensures the complete removal of cancer cells while preserving as much healthy tissue as possible. However, depending on the cancer's size and depth, the resulting wound can sometimes be significant, leading patients to question, "Why are Mohs surgery scars so big?"

Factors Influencing Scar Size

  1. Cancer Size and Depth: Larger or deeper cancers require the removal of more tissue, leading to larger wounds and, consequently, bigger scars.

  2. Location: Areas like the nose and face are more challenging due to their visibility and the skin's complexity, affecting scar size and healing.

  3. Individual Healing Responses: People heal differently, with some developing lumpy scars after Mohs surgery, which can appear larger or more prominent.

Managing and Minimizing Scars

While the primary goal of Mohs surgery is to effectively remove skin cancer, attention to the resulting scars is also crucial. Here's how to address concerns related to "Why are Mohs surgery scars so big?":

  1. Immediate Post-Surgical Care: Proper wound care following surgery is critical in promoting healing and minimizing scar appearance. This includes keeping the area clean and following your surgeon's care instructions diligently.

  2. Scar Massage: Gently massaging the scarred area can improve flexibility and appearance by breaking down scar tissue and promoting blood flow.

  3. Healing Creams and Ointments: Specialized healing creams and ointments can aid in the recovery process, helping to keep the wound moist and encouraging better healing.

  4. Facial Treatments: For scars on the face, consulting with a dermatologist about facial treatments that promote healing and reduce scarring can be beneficial.

  5. Preventive Measures: Taking preventive measures, such as protecting the scar from the sun, can significantly impact the scar's final appearance.

Mohs Surgery Scar Pictures: Setting Realistic Expectations

Reviewing Mohs surgery scar pictures can provide realistic expectations about the potential size and appearance of scars. Understanding that scars, especially those resulting from the removal of larger or deeper cancers, can be more prominent, helps in mentally preparing for the healing journey.


When pondering, "Why are Mohs surgery scars so big?", it's essential to remember the surgery's life-saving purpose. The size of the scar often reflects the extent of the surgery needed to remove all cancerous cells effectively. With proper care, including massage, the use of healing creams, and protective measures, the appearance of scars can be significantly improved, leading to satisfactory healing outcomes. For concerns about lumpy scars after Mohs surgery or extensive scarring, consulting with your surgeon or a dermatologist can provide options for further treatment and scar management.


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