Minimally-Invasive Skin Mole Removal
Moles, also called nevi, are common skin growths made from clusters of pigmented cells. The average person has between 10 and 40 moles all across their body. Most appear during childhood or adolescence and present no problems throughout a person’s life. A few moles can develop into cancer, so monitoring them is an important preventive measure for detecting skin cancer.
Moles can be small or large, light or dark and develop virtually anywhere on the body. Some can even fade away over time, while others can darken or grow, usually due to hormonal changes. Most moles can be ignored, as they present no medical or functional concerns. Some may be in areas that present a functional or aesthetic concern and can be safely removed by a dermatologist.
Learn the ABCDE Test for Unusual Moles
It is important to be aware of moles on your body, especially if they begin to change. Moles that change can be a sign of skin cancer. Use the common ABCDE test to evaluate moles and see if you need to visit your dermatologist:
- A is for asymmetrical – One half is unlike the other half.
- B is for border – Look for moles with irregular, notched or scalloped borders.
- C is for color – Look for growths that have changed color, have many colors or have uneven color.
- D is for diameter – Look for new growth in a mole larger than 1/4 inch (about 6 millimeters).
- E is for evolving – Watch for moles that change in size, shape, color or height, especially if part or all of a mole turns black.
Skin moles that display suspicious behavior or that present functional or aesthetic concerns can be removed. A functional concern would be a mole that snags on clothing or jewelry or restricts movement. Aesthetic concerns would be moles that are in embarrassing locations.
Moles that are removed are sent to a lab for testing to rule out skin cancer. Dr. Spitzler or Dr. Murad can perform mole removal procedures that minimize scarring. If you have a troublesome mole or moles that change size or color, don’t hesitate to call or message us online at Spectrum Dermatology of Atlanta.