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Experience of Patients With Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer of the Head and Neck Undergoing Mohs Surgery

18 Years
Open (Enrolling)
Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer

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Trial Information

Experience of Patients With Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer of the Head and Neck Undergoing Mohs Surgery

Mohs surgery offers significant benefits in excising NMSC tumors of the head and neck by
precisely removing cancerous tissue while preserving the maximum amount of healthy tissue, a
characteristic of particular advantage when dealing with NMSC in the highly cosmetic and
functional cericofacial region. Despite this, few studies have explored the patient
perspective on their experience with Mohs surgery. Futhermore, treatment for NMSC can
result in scarring, disfigurement, and changes to function and appearance. Ramifications on
identity and self, embodiment and aesthetics, interaction and relationships appear likely
and consequences on function and quality of life might then follow. Using Grounded Theory,
this project aims to explore the question "what is the experience of Mohs surgery for
non-melanoma skin cancer patients who have lesions of the head and neck?" Potential patient
participants are those diagnosed with non-melanoma skin cancer, who have undergone Mohs
surgery or are scheduled to undergo Mohs surgery on skin located in any area above the
shoulders, and are referred to the project by their surgeons. They will represent a range
of disease, from those who have had a single Mohs surgery to those with recurrent NMSC and
repeated Mohs. Patients will also read and speak English and be at least 18 years of age.
Transcribed interviews and field notes will be analyzed using constant comparative technique
to develop descriptive and theoretical understandings of how experience Mohs surgery for
non-melanoma skin cancer of the head and nexk.

Inclusion Criteria:

- Patient participants must have an upcoming Mohs surgery scheduled or have already
undergone Mohs surgery within the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

- All participants must read and speak English.

- For those patient participants with communication impairments due to surgery and
treatment, accomodations for alternate methods of communication, including typing
responses to the interview guide into a laptop computer or writing responses with a
pen on paper, will be provided.

- Both male and female

- Must read and speak English

- Be over the age 18 and able to give consent.

Exclusion Criteria:

- This study excludes patients and their partners who are incapacitated or not old
enough to give consent, more specifically those under the age of 18.

Type of Study:


Study Design:

Observational Model: Cohort

Principal Investigator

Sarah Kagan, PhD, RN

Investigator Role:

Principal Investigator

Investigator Affiliation:

Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania


United States: Institutional Review Board

Study ID:

UPCC 07311



Start Date:

July 2011

Completion Date:

August 2013

Related Keywords:

  • Non-melanoma Skin Cancer
  • Non-Melanoma skin cancer patients who have undergone or about to undergo Mohs surgery
  • who are treated within the University of Pennsylvania Health System
  • Skin Neoplasms
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms
  • Carcinoma, Basal Cell
  • Carcinoma, Basosquamous
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell



Abramson Cancer Center of the University of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania  19104-4283