What you need to know about Mohs skin cancer surgery

by Heidi Anderson, M.D.

While new technological advancements for skin care garner national attention, a technique that was developed in the 1930s and popularized in the 60s and 70s remains the standard of care for eradicating the most common skin cancers in the U.S.

Mohs Microscopic surgery targets basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas, cancers that typically appear on areas of the body frequently exposed to the sun. These cancers are primarily from cumulative excessive ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure.

Mohs surgery is used to remove skin cancers that are invasive, large or in areas at risk for recurrence, while sparing healthy cells. This technique is highly effective, with a success rate of 97-99 percent, and has been proven to be the most effective, accurate way to eradicate these cancers. Read on to learn more about this tissue-sparing, highly effective skin cancer surgery.

How does it work?

The tumor and surrounding area are anesthetized and the tumor is surgically removed. The removed tissue is marked with colored dyes to map the tissue compared to the excision site, and then processed and examined under the microscope. If any cancer is still present on the outer edge of the areas, additional layers where the cancer cells exist are precisely removed. The process is carefully repeated until only cancer-free tissue is left. Unlike routine excisions, the lab work is processed immediately to ensure all impacted cells are removed.

How long does the process take?

The whole process is usually completed in one day. Total removal of a skin cancer spot may involve several surgical stages and, therefore, tissue processing. The length of each session will depend on tumor location, size and extent of closure. Once the cancer is removed, the surgeon determines the best repair technique. This may be a simple line, a flap (rearranging tissue) or even a graft (using tissue from another site).

Are follow-up appointments necessary?

A period of observation is necessary by your dermatologist to examine for recurrence. Follow-up appointments will be determined by how well your skin is healing. Studies have shown that once you have skin cancer, there is a possibility that you will develop additional cancerous spots in the years ahead. Regular self-examinations are encouraged, as well as routine check-ins with your dermatologist.

How should I prepare?

Try to get a good night’s rest and eat a full breakfast. You can take your usual medication, unless we direct otherwise. It’s a good idea to bring a book or magazine with you on the day of surgery. The procedure may take a full day and there is time to relax while the tissue specimens are processed and reviewed.

Call us today if you see any suspicious spots (here’s what to look for). We’re here to help you lead a healthy, active life!

Posted in Blog

Your guide to at-home skin cancer self-examinations

by Heidi Anderson, M.D.

Did you know that every year there are more new cases of skin cancer than breast, lung, colon and prostate cancer combined? According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, more people have been treated for skin cancer in the past thirty years than all other types of cancer combined. Nearly one in five Americans will develop skin cancer and the monetary cost is staggering — around $8.1 million is spent every year for treatment.

In addition to taking preventative measures like avoiding the sun during peak hours and using broad-spectrum sunscreen or protective clothing, you should perform routine self-examinations to spot any abnormalities and detect possible skin cancer. Get to know your skin and call your dermatologist if anything looks unusual!

Here are some tips from the American Academy of Dermatology to help you perform an effective evaluation on yourself.

What to look for: The ABCDE rule

  • A is for Asymmetry: One half does not match the other.
  • B is for Border: Edges are irregular, ragged, notched, or blurred.
  • C is for Color: Color is not the same all over and may include shades of brown or black, or sometimes with patches of pink, red, white, or blue.
  • D is for Diameter: Larger than 6 millimeters across (about ¼ inch – the size of a pencil eraser), although melanomas can sometimes be smaller than this.
  • E is for Evolving: Changing in size, shape, or color.

How to check your spots

  1. Stand squarely in front of a mirror and raise both arms. Examine the front, then back, of your upper body.
  2. Bend your elbows and look at your forearms, upper arms and palms.
  3. Examine the back of your legs and feet, spaces between your toes as well as your soles.
  4. Grab a hand-held mirror and check the back of your neck and scalp. Lift your hair if needed.
  5. Use the same mirror to check your buttocks and back.

Your best defense against skin cancer is to avoid the sun and use preventative measures like protective clothing and sunscreen. We would love to help you choose a routine that’s right for your skin. Call us today for a recommendation!

Posted in Blog

Live, Love & Lift with our Ultherapy Specials

ultherapy specials

ultherapy specialsUltherapy® targets your neck, chin and brow non-invasively and DOCS is making it easier for you to look your best! Our Ultherapy specials will be available May 22-31, 2017. If you have not had a previous complimentary consult with us, please call and schedule now with Jane Thomas, ARNP. Our Ultherapy page includes before & after pictures and video, making it easier for you to decide if this is best for you.



Purchase a lower face treatment, SAVE $500 ($1995 reg. price)
Purchase a full face treatment, SAVE $750 ($2995 reg. price)
Purchase a full neck (double pass) treatment, SAVE $500 ($2495 reg. price)
Purchase a lower face and neck treatment, SAVE $750 ($2695 reg. price)


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Signature Facial with Free EltaMD Sunscreen

signature facial

signature facialRelax with our Signature Facial paired with a FREE Elta MD sunscreen. An intensely rejuvenizing treatment! Helping you achieve healthy, rejuvenated skin is our goal. Utilizing our expertise, we take the time to understand your skin and lifestyle. The results are superior and the experience is pleasant. Visit our Facials page to view other facial offerings.
Free sunscreen offer with your signature facial is valid during May 2017. Please call to schedule your appointment.

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Sunscreen Sale: Mix & Match! Buy One, Get One 50% OFF

sunscreen sale


Sunscreen Sale: Mix & Match! Buy One, Get One 50% OFF. DOCS carries only the best choices for sunscreens: EltaMD, Revision, Colorescience, SkinMedica, Heliocare, Topix. Sunscreen Options: Chemical Free, Tinted, Sport, Powder, Moisturizing, Lip Balm & Oral. Be Sun Smart to Live Longer & Look Younger!
Check out our sunscreen breakdown to find which one is best for you. 

elta MD sunscreen salecolorescience sunscreen salesunscreen sale

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Sclerotherapy and Laser can help reduce spider veins

spider veins

LOVE YOUR LEGS AGAIN! Sclerotherapy and Laser can help reduce spider veins. During the month of May SAVE $50 OFF your treatment. Sclerotherapy is a medical procedure used to treat “spider veins.” During sclerotherapy, a solution is injected directly into the affected spider vein. The solution irritates the lining of the vessel, causing it to swell and stick together. Over time, the vessel turns into scar tissue that fades from view. Sclerotherapy is a proven procedure and has been used for decades. Click here to learn more about Sclerotherapy.
Complimentary Consultations with Jane Thomas, ARNP.

before & after spider veins

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Free Skin Cancer Screenings for Melanoma Awareness Month

free skin cancer screenings

free skin cancer screeningsDuring Melanoma Awareness Month, Dermatology of Coastal Sarasota (DOCS) will offer free skin cancer screenings to board-hired employees of the Sarasota County School District. On Monday, May 1, Melanoma Monday, the free screenings will take place on site at The Landings, 1960 Landings Blvd., Sarasota, from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. On Friday, May 26, Don’t Fry Day, the free screenings will be held on site at the Transportation Department, 301 Old Venice Road, Osprey, from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.

May is designated as National Melanoma Month. Included in that designation is National Melanoma Monday, which is the first Monday in May. The American Academy of Dermatology has set aside this day to raise awareness about skin cancer. Melanoma is a type of skin cancer, and is the deadliest of skin cancers.
To help reduce rising rates of skin cancer from overexposure to the ultraviolet (UV) rays of the sun, the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention has designated the Friday before Memorial Day as
Don’t Fry Day to encourage sun safety awareness.
Click here for a breakdown of sunscreens we carry at DOCs.

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Revision® Teamine Eye Complex


teamineRevision® Teamine eye complex creates a youthful look by reducing puffiness and dark circles around your eyes. Purchase Teamine eye complex and receive 50% OFF Teamine concealer. It’s the perfect combination! Special pricing valid through June 30, 2017.
Click here to see all the skincare products we offer.

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Brilliant Distinctions Program

brilliant distinction program

Reward yourself brilliantly. Join Brilliant Distinctions and SAVE. It’s easy, and free.  

When you visit DOCs and purchase select Allergan products or treatments the points you earn that day can be used for savings on future visits. Shop at the Brilliant Distinctions Mall and you earn points for every transaction! Save by turning your points into savings on treatments or products. Interested in learning more? Click here to log in or get more information about the program or ask one of our team members.




Posted in Cosmetic Specials

Upcoming Events

Fri 26

Live, Love & Lift with our Ultherapy Specials and look your best!

May 22 @ 8:00 AM - May 31 @ 5:00 PM
Sarasota FL
United States
Jun 14

Kybella – Say Goodbye to your Double Chin!

June 14 @ 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Sarasota FL
United States
Aug 09

Love your legs: how Sclerotherapy and Laser can help reduce spider veins

August 9 @ 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Sarasota FL
United States
Oct 11

Collagen Induction using Micro-Needling and Your Growth Factors (PRP)

October 11 @ 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Sarasota FL
United States
Dec 13

The Liquid Face Lift – Dermal Fillers & Botox

December 13 @ 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Sarasota FL
United States