As a general guide, most wounds will take a couple of weeks to heal – although if the surgery was performed on a larger area, this may take longer. You may also experience some soreness during recovery, which is normal. If you have any concerns, do not hesitate to contact us.
In most cases, we allow approximately 2-4 hours, although it may vary depending on the individual case. Dr Mistry will g through the expected course of your surgery during the consultation.
Skin cancer is primarily caused by exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun or artificial sources like tanning beds. UV radiation damages the DNA in skin cells, leading to mutations that cause cells to grow uncontrollably and form cancerous tumours. Factors like sun exposure, fair skin, a history of sunburns, and family history increase the risk. Protecting your skin from UV radiation and regularly checking for changes can help prevent and detect skin cancer early.
Skin cancer can present various signs and symptoms, which can differ depending on the type of skin cancer. Here are some common signs to watch for:
- A new, unusual growth or sore that doesn’t heal: This can be a firm, red nodule, a flat scaly patch, or a sore that doesn’t heal within a few weeks.
- Changes in the appearance of moles: Look for moles that change in size, colour, shape, or texture. Moles that become itchy, tender, or bleed should be evaluated.
- Irregular borders: Melanomas, a type of skin cancer, often have uneven or irregular borders.
- Changes in colour: Watch for moles or skin growths that have multiple colours or variations in colour, such as shades of brown, black, white, red, or blue.
- Asymmetry: Suspicious lesions may have one half that does not match the other half in terms of shape or colour.
- Diameter: Lesions larger than the size of a pencil eraser (about 6 millimetres) may be of concern, although melanomas can be smaller.
- Evolving or changing lesions: Be vigilant about any mole or skin growth that evolves or changes over time, including changes in size, shape, colour, or symptoms like itching, bleeding, or crusting.
It’s important to remember that these signs and symptoms are not exclusive to skin cancer and can be caused by other conditions as well. If you notice any concerning changes in your skin, it’s best to consult a dermatologist or healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment. Early detection and prompt treatment significantly improve the outcome of skin cancer.
There are three main types of skin cancer: basal cell carcinoma (BCC), squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), and melanoma. Here’s an overview of each type:
- Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC): BCC is the most common type of skin cancer. It usually develops on sun-exposed areas, such as the face, scalp, ears, and neck. BCC typically appears as a raised, pearly, or translucent bump on the skin that may have visible blood vessels. It can also present as a sore or a scaly, reddish patch. BCC tends to grow slowly and rarely spreads to other parts of the body, but it should still be treated promptly.
- Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC): SCC is the second most common type of skin cancer. It commonly occurs in sun-exposed areas but can develop anywhere on the body. SCC often appears as a firm, red nodule, a rough, scaly patch, or a sore that doesn’t heal. It may crust or bleed. SCC has a higher risk of spreading to other areas of the body compared to BCC, particularly if left untreated.
- Melanoma: Melanoma is the most aggressive and potentially life-threatening type of skin cancer. It arises from melanocytes, the cells that produce skin pigment (melanin). Melanoma can develop on any part of the body, including areas not exposed to the sun. It often appears as a new mole or as an existing mole that undergoes changes. Signs of melanoma include asymmetry, irregular borders, variations in colour, a diameter larger than 6 millimetres, and evolving or changing characteristics. Melanoma has a higher likelihood of spreading to other organs and requires early detection and prompt treatment for the best prognosis.
In addition to these three main types, there are other rare types of skin cancer, such as Merkel cell carcinoma and dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans, but they are less common. It’s crucial to regularly examine your skin for any changes or suspicious lesions and consult a healthcare professional if you notice anything concerning.
Understanding the difference between cosmetic surgery vs. plastic and reconstructive surgery
Cosmetic surgery is a medical specialty that primarily focuses on enhancing a patient’s appearance. It is associated with aesthetic goals aimed at improving or altering physical features to achieve a more pleasing look.
Cosmetic surgery procedures are entirely elective, and they are not typically covered by Medicare or private health funds. In most cases, patients pay for cosmetic surgeries out of their own pockets.
One important distinction to note is that cosmetic surgery is not associated with the Medical Benefits Schedule (MBS) in Australia, and as a result, there are no corresponding MBS item numbers or codes for these procedures. Therefore, individuals who choose to undergo cosmetic surgery can expect to bear the full cost of the procedure. Surgical costs include (but are not limited to):
- Fee for surgeon
- Fee for anaesthetist
- Fee for theatre
Plastic and reconstructive surgery, on the other hand, is a medical specialty that is primarily concerned with restoring or improving the aesthetic and function of the body.
These procedures often involve addressing congenital abnormalities, trauma-related injuries, or medical conditions that affect a person’s appearance or bodily functions. Importantly, many plastic and reconstructive surgery procedures may qualify for coverage by private health fund providers.
In Australia, plastic and reconstructive surgery procedures are typically associated with MBS item numbers. If the criteria specified in the MBS guidelines are met, private health fund providers may partially cover the cost of these procedures. This means that patients who meet the necessary requirements under their insurance policy can benefit from reduced out-of-pocket expenses when undergoing plastic and reconstructive surgery.
Surgeries such as Abdominoplasty for example can be both a cosmetic or reconstructive procedure.
Please Note: Information provided on Dr Mistry’s website is provided as a basic guide, it does not constitute a diagnosis and should not be taken as medical advice. Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks.