FAQs

Which procedures are not covered by OHIP?

Eligibility for OHIP coverage of a procedure is not determined by your family doctor or by the Centre for Minor Surgery. The Ministry of Health has designated a number of procedures to be uninsured by a diagnosis-based system – meaning that certain types of growths, lumps or bumps are covered while others are not. Coverage by OHIP is generally not based on the size of the growth or whether or not it is causing symptoms or discomfort. Examples of skin and subcutaneous growths that are generally not covered by OHIP are:

Will OHIP cover my surgery?

Treatment of most benign lesions (cysts, lipomas, non-suspicious moles) is considered an unessential service by the Ministry of Health and is not covered by OHIP. It is important to understand that coverage by OHIP is determined by the Ministry of Health, not your surgeon or family physician.

Will my doctor examine me before my surgery?

All patients will receive a consultation with one of our plastic surgeons that include reviewing medical history and physical examination of the skin lesion.

Will my surgery be painful?

Local anesthesia will be administered with a tiny needle. At CFMS, we have have particular expertise in giving painless or minimally painful needles. We are experts due to the huge volume of such cases we treat.

Will I be put to sleep?

No. All CFMS procedures are performed with safe local anesthesia.

Will I have stitches?

Some cases need stitches, others do not. The type of skin growth being removed, depth and other factors will determine whether or not stitches will be required but as a general rule, stitches are used for CFMS cases.

Will I have a scar?

A basic fact is that a skin cut, scrape, or incision leaves a scar. There is no such thing as totally “scarless” surgery. At CFMS, our Royal College-certified plastic surgeons use the best, most meticulous techniques to minimize scarring. Ask about the “tiny scar” cyst and lipoma surgeries that we specialize in at CFMS.

What will the scar look like?

People heal differently. As surgeons we can control the placement and length of an incision but how that incision ultimately heals is less predictable because two people undergoing the same procedure by the same surgeon may heal with very different scars due to individualized healing tendencies. At CFMS, our Royal College-certified plastic surgeons use the best, most meticulous techniques to minimize scarring. Ask about the “tiny scar” cyst and lipoma surgeries that we specialize in at CFMS​.

Can I drive home after my surgery?

You may drive home after your surgery unless you’ve had surgery on or near your eyes or on your hands. Keep in mind that many automobile insurance policies may be voided while you are recovering from surgery. If in doubt, consult your insurance broker in advance of your surgery.

When can I return to work?

After minor surgery, issues to consider with respect to returning to work mostly focus on the type of work you do and the likelihood that your work duties might physically strain your stitch line. This can lead to stitches opening and increase your risk of infection and poor scarring.

Can I have multiple surgeries on the same day?

This needs to be considered on a case-by-case basis. We never operate on both hands or feet on the same day to avoid making the recovery period too challenging. We also closely monitor the total dosage of local anesthesia administered on a given day to stay well within the daily limit recommended for the drug. As such, surgery on multiple places at once may not be advisable.

What will happen if I do not have my skin cancer tumor(s) removed?

Melanoma and squamous cell carcinomas can spread (sometimes rapidly) to other parts of the body if you do not have them removed. Although basal cell carcinomas do not usually spread to other parts of the body, they continue to grow. In rare cases, basal cell carcinomas can grow down to a nerve and spread. Melanoma and squamous cell carcinomas also can cause death if they are left untreated and spread. These cancers are typically more disfiguring the longer they are left untreated and the larger they grow.

Can I postpone my surgery?

Postponing your surgery can give your cancer the opportunity to grow larger and spread, complicating reconstruction and recovery. Squamous cell carcinomas and melanoma can be deadly if they spread to other parts of the body. For these reasons, we do not recommend postponing surgery. It’s also very important to be on time for your procedure to ensure that you have it as scheduled.

What medications, if any, must I stop taking before my surgery?

Continue all medications unless you are instructed to stop them. If in doubt, call the office well in advance of your surgery date.

Can skin cancer kill me?

Yes. Squamous cell carcinomas and melanoma can spread to other parts of the body and lead to death. Few people die from basal cell carcinomas; however, it can be severely disfiguring if it is left untreated and grows large. In some cases, it can affect nerves and cause the eyes, lips, cheeks, and other areas of the body to function poorly. In rare cases, basal cell carcinoma has lead to death.

Can I eat before my surgery?

Yes, this is encouraged to lessen the chance of feeling light-headed or “jittery” before and during your surgery.

How long will my procedure last?

This is variable, ask your surgeon to learn more.

How do I get started?

To meet with one of the plastic surgeons at The Centre for Minor Surgery in Toronto, book a consultation using our online form or by calling (416) 663-9649.
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At The Centre For Minor Surgery our goal is to provide excellence in surgical treatment for benign and cancerous growths. We strive to overcome the problem of long waiting times. No referral is needed to be seen by one of our Royal College-certified plastic surgeons.

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