Minor Surgery is sometimes offered in Primary Care for the removal of benign skin lesions such as skin tags, warts and cysts. In addition, cryotherapy (freeze treatment) can be used to treat some lesions. Minor Surgery is not available at all GPs surgeries as it does not form part of the GMS contract. Provision of such services comes under ‘Enhanced Services’ and a Practice may choose to opt in, but this is not a standard, commissioned, service. For this, they need not only suitably skilled staff, but also surplus time to allow clinicians and nurses to run these clinics when they would otherwise be seeing patients.
We no longer have a GP with minor surgical skills training and demand on appointments is high. As such we will no longer be offering minor surgery services here at Greystoke. All patients on our waiting lists have been contacted and offered an appointment to have their final treatment.
Patients with concern over their skin lesions should still have an assessment by a clinician. Concerning lesions will be referred to dermatology, as they always have. For benign, or ‘nuisance’ lesions, the hospital have set criteria that would need to be met, for example recurrent infection or bleeding. These would be assessed on a case-by-case basis. We have several patients requesting removal of asymptomatic, benign lesions and the NHS is unable to offer this. Patients have the option of private removal if they so wish.
Cryotherapy is rarely offered in general practice. For lesions such as recurrent actinic (solar) keratoses, your GP may offer you Efudix cream, which is just as effective. Treatments for warts and verrucae can be purchased from local pharmacies. Below is some guidance for self-management, following advice obtained from our local dermatology department. In addition there is some information about Molluscum Contagiosum, a common skin condition in young children.