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Eyelid Skin Cancer

Treating Eyelid Skin Cancer

Eyelid skin cancer is a common reason patients seek specialized care from Dr. Zoumalan. Dr. Zoumalan specializes in the removal of eyelid skin cancer and eyelid reconstruction. He has received training in reconstruction and healing techniques. Dr. Zoumalan has performed thousands of eyelid reconstructive surgeries and many of them have involved skin cancer and eyelid reconstruction.

Common Conditions:

The most common eyelid skin cancer is basal cell carcinoma, followed by squamous cell carcinoma and sebaceous cell carcinoma. Melanoma is also seen but not as common as basal cell carcinoma and the others. Basal cell carcinoma is most commonly seen in fair skinned individuals with a history of prolonged sun exposure. It is important to have any new bumps or moles around your face, eyelids and body evaluated by a dermatologist or by a plastic surgeon.

This patient had a large left lower lid skin cancer (basal cell carcinoma). Mohs surgery by a dermatologist was performed to remove the skin cancer (which is located between the black border as shown above). The patient had over 33% loss of his lower lid from the Mohs surgery. Dr. Zoumalan performed eyelid reconstructive surgery to help repair the defect. A skin/muscle advancement flap was used to repair the defect. The post operative photos were taken 3 months after surgery. Notice the natural looking result and normal lid position and contour.
This patient had a biopsy proven right medial canthal (eyelid) basal cell skin cancer. It was removed by a Mohs trained dermatologist. The skin cancer also involved her tear duct system. Dr. Zoumalan was able to reconstruct her defect using local skin flaps. Her tear duct was also reconstructed with the use of silicone tubes as stents. Her post operative photograph was taken six months after surgery and note the natural appearing result with very well healed incisions. Her tear duct system remains patent and functioning normally.

Mohs Surgery:

Dr. Zoumalan usually works with a dermatologist who is trained in Mohs surgery to treat eyelid skin cancer. Mohs surgery is a microscopically controlled surgery used to treat common types of skin cancer with a high cure rate (up to 95-97% in selected studies for basal cell carcinoma). It is one of the many methods of obtaining complete margin control during removal of a skin cancer using frozen section histology. Once a dermatologist completes the Mohs surgery on the patient, Dr. Zoumalan will then perform the eyelid reconstruction. There are various methods used in eyelid reconstruction, and they all depend on various factors:

  • Age of patient and the laxity of the eyelid tissue.
  • Amount of tissue missing (defect) after having the skin cancer removed.
  • Location of the defect (upper lid, lower lid, medial or lateral lid) and if it involves the tear duct system.

Depending on these factors, reconstruction can be performed by utilizing a variety of techniques to help fill in the missing area of skin. Dr. Zoumalan uses minimally invasive techniques to allow for optimal recovery and minimizing local trauma to surrounding healthy tissue. Dr. Zoumalan’s experience in reconstructive surgery allows for him to use several advanced techniques such as local advancement of tissue to fill in the defect, local skin and muscle flaps, and lid tightening techniques. Skin grafts may need to be used in selected cases as well.

Reconstructive Eyelid Surgery:

The surgery itself can either be performed in the office under local anesthesia or in the operating room. This all depends on the size of the lesion and how much tissue loss is expected. Larger defects and those that involve the tear duct system will require you to be sedated in the operating room. You and Dr. Zoumalan will discuss these options once you meet with him for your consultation. Dr. Zoumalan needs to perform a careful examination before your Mohs surgery and after it is removed in order to best prepare you for your reconstruction.

Right lower lid basal cell carcinoma

Preoperative Diagnosis: Right lower lid basal cell carcinoma that was biopsied in the office.

Preoperative Diagnosis: Right lower lid basal cell carcinoma

Procedure performed: Right lower lid excision of basal cell carcinoma and reconstruction using a myocutaneous advancement flap (Tenzel flap).

Left lower lid basal cell carcinoma

Preoperative Diagnosis: Left lower lid basal cell carcinoma that was biopsied in the office.

Preoperative Diagnosis:Left lower lid basal cell carcinoma

Procedure performed: Left lower lid excision of basal cell carcinoma and reconstruction using a myocutaneous advancement flap (Tenzel flap).


*Individual results may vary

All before and after pictures displayed are real patients who have consented to having their pictures published on our site. Individual results will vary with each patient and Dr. Christopher Zoumalan does not guarantee any outcomes of procedures shown. All pictures are meant for reference and illustrative purposes only.

Dr. Christopher Zoumalan is a board-certified oculoplastic surgeon in Beverly Hills, specializing in aesthetic and reconstructive oculoplastic surgery. Dr. Zoumalan is passionate about helping patients reach their ideal aesthetic and restore functionality with the leading cosmetic eyelid surgery, reconstructive eyelid surgery, and non-surgical cosmetic procedures. Dr. Zoumalan has been featured on several television shows and has traveled the world as a trusted oculoplastic specialist. Browse the video gallery below to learn more about oculoplastic procedures and treatments.
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