Reconstructive Skin Cancer Procedure Information


In general, good candidates for reconstructive skin-cancer procedures:

  • Have had a biopsy proving skin cancer

  • Are healthy and do not have medical conditions that impair healing

  • Are nonsmokers

  • Have a positive outlook and realistic expectations


In preparing for a reconstructive skin-cancer procedure, you may be asked to:

  • Get lab testing or a medical evaluation

  • Take certain medications or adjust your current medications

  • Stop smoking

  • Avoid taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs, and herbal supplements because they can increase bleeding and bruising

  • Arrange for a friend or family member to drive you to and from surgery and to stay with you the first night following surgery


Skin-cancer removal surgery recovery is fairly easy. Incision sites may be sore or red, or drain small amounts of fluid. You will be able to return to light activity as instructed by your surgeon. Try to avoid movement that stresses your wound or sutures. Healing will continue for many weeks or months as incision lines continue to improve. In some cases, secondary procedures may be required to complete or refine your reconstruction. Avoid sun exposure as new cancer may develop or scars can become raised, red, or discolored.

Although infrequent, the risks and complications of skin-cancer removal include:

  • Recurrence

  • Poor scarring

  • Incomplete removal

  • Skin loss

  • Need for additional surgery

Unlikely Complications