Joplin, Mo. — Area residents with a certain type of cancer will no longer have to leave the Four State area to get treatment for it. It’s called Mohs surgery to treat many kinds of skin cancer. It’s named after the physician who invented the technique.

It involves the removal of cancerous skin cells until surgeons are satisfied they’ve removed them all.

Dr. Stephen Matlock will start offering the technique in Joplin next week.

“And we cut out right around that area, we take it back to the lab, we process it, and we look at that under a microscope and say ‘Are there cancer cells left or does it look like it’s all clear?’ If there’s any cancer left we go back to where it was positive at, we take a little bit more, and we check that and we repeat that process ’til it’s all gone,” said Dr. Stephen Matlock, Dermatologist, Mohs Surgeon.

Until now, Matlock, a Joplin native, says patients needing the procedure have had to travel as far away as Springfield, Northwest Arkansas, or Kansas City to receive it.

Matlock is a second-generation physician in Joplin. His father, Mark, was a longtime dermatologist prior to his death in 2014.