Soft Tissue Surgery

Derek K. Paul, MD, FACS -  - General Surgeon

Derek K. Paul, MD, FACS

General Surgeon & Laparoscopic Surgeon & Oncological Surgeon located in Vero Beach, FL

When a painful lump or suspicious-looking lesion appears, you may need soft tissue surgery to have the problem removed. Board-certified surgeon Derek K. Paul MD, FACS, in Vero Beach, Florida, carefully and completely removes a variety of benign and malignant soft tissue tumors, including cysts and skin cancer. If you’re concerned about a visible lump or ugly-looking skin lesion, call the office or use the online booking feature to schedule an appointment.

Soft Tissue Surgery Q & A

What is soft tissue surgery?

Dr. Paul performs soft tissue surgery when disease, trauma, or a tumor affects your skin and other soft tissues.

Soft tissue conditions cover numerous potential problems, from burns, wounds, and infections, to benign and malignant tumors. However, Dr. Paul most often performs soft tissue surgery to remove cysts, lipomas, and skin cancer.

What are the different types of skin cancer?

The top cause of skin cancer is excessive exposure to sunlight without protection, such as clothing or sunscreen. The damage from sun exposure accumulates over the years, raising your risk for skin cancer as you get older. Severe sunburns during your childhood also increase your chances of developing cancer.

The three primary types of skin cancer include:

Basal cell carcinoma

The most common type of skin cancer, basal cell carcinoma, takes on a variety of appearances. You may notice a raised pink or reddish patch that forms a crust, a pink, red, or translucent bump, or an open sore that oozes and crusts.

Squamous cell carcinoma

Squamous cell carcinoma, the second most common type, often begins as a benign, dry, scaly lesion. When the lesion does not receive treatment, it can turn into skin cancer.


Melanoma is the least common but deadliest type of skin cancer because it spreads throughout your body. This type of skin cancer often begins in a benign mole or a lesion resembling a mole. If you see any change in a mole, you should have it evaluated by Dr. Paul.

What type of cyst does soft tissue surgery remove?

A cyst is a small sac-like structure that develops within tissues throughout your body. A few examples of soft tissue cysts include:

  • Sebaceous cysts
  • Epidermoid cysts
  • Pilonidal cysts
  • Breast cysts
  • Pancreatic cysts
  • Kidney cysts
  • Ganglion cysts

Most cysts are benign and don’t cause symptoms. However, some cysts become cancerous, and others can get large enough to cause pain as they press on nerves and nearby tissues. When your cyst is painful or poses a risk for cancer, surgical removal is needed.

What is a lipoma?

A lipoma develops between your skin and the skin’s underlying muscles, forming a lump of fat cells. Lipomas are soft, slow-growing, and typically occur in your back, shoulders, neck, head, and legs.

Though lipomas are benign, they can get large enough to cause pain. Treatment for a lipoma is soft tissue surgery to cut out the lump.

If you need a painful or suspicious lump removed from your body with soft tissue surgery, call Derek K. Paul MD, FACS, or schedule an appointment online.