Other Surgery

Skin Lesions & Skin Cancer Surgery

(Excision of Lesions and Skin Cancer)


Skin lesions needing plastic surgery may be benign or malignant. Following their excision, usually under local anaesthetic, the incision is closed directly, with a local flap (re-arrangement of the local tissues), or using a skin graft taken from another area of the body. The skin graft may be a full thickness graft (from behind the ear, lower neck, in front of the ear, the groin crease or from the inner arm) or a split skin graft (usually from the thigh). When skin grafts are needed on the face, Professor Malata prefers to use full thickness skin grafts for better cosmetic results. In general local flaps produce superior cosmetic results in view of their similar thickness, texture and colour match to the surrounding tissues.

Professor Malata will discuss with you the most appropriate method of removing your skin lesion and reconstructing the resultant defect.

Professor Malata is a specialist in the assessment and treatment of skin malignancies and moles. He attends the Addenbrooke’s Skin Cancer Multi-Disciplinary Team meetings and surgically treats many skin cancers and lesions each week. As the incidence of skin cancer increases in the UK many people are concerned about moles or lesions on their body. Skin and mole assessments are essential for skin health especially if you are fair skinned, red headed, regularly engage in outdoor pursuits, live or have lived in a sunny climate. If you have any particular concerns or have a previous history of skin cancer Professor Malata can assess your skin and recommend any suspicious moles for excision. If there is any doubt he will refer you to one of his specialist Dermatology colleagues he closely works with and consults side by side.

As in any plastic surgery, there are benefits, risks and the final results are not guaranteed.


Some risks associated with excising skin lesions

  • Bleeding / haematoma

  • Bruising & swelling: unavoidable

  • Infection: uncommon

  • Wound breakdown / delayed healing / incomplete skin graft take

  • Distortion of anatomical features: the eyebrow, eyelid, nose or lips

  • Muscle weakness due to damage to motor nerves

  • numbness due to damage to sensory nerves – partially recovers.

  • Scars: spread (wide); lumpy and raised,(hypertrophic or keloid)

  • Occasional need for further treatment: more surgery, radiotherapy, scar revision

  • Recurrence of the lesion excised

  • hair loss at the site of the operation.