What are moles?
Moles are generally harmless skin growths that may be flat or raised. They vary in color from pink flesh tones to tan or brown. Most people have at least some moles, while others develop many. The number depends on our genes. Moles sometimes appear in “crops,” especially during adolescence.
What are the causes?
Moles can begin to grow in infancy and new ones can develop at any age. Once a mole appears, it usually stays for life without becoming a medical problem. A growing or changing mole, especially in an adult, should be checked by a physician. It is important to be aware of your moles and any possible changes in order to monitor for potential skin cancer, particularly for adults.
How are moles treated?
Most moles are harmless and safe to ignore, but when treatment is necessary, it can be done under the following conditions:
- You have a mole that has bled, has an unusual shape, is growing rapidly, or changes color (which are warning signs of possible malignancy)
- You have a mole that is irritated by your clothing, comb, or razor
- You have an unsightly mole that you want to remove for “cosmetic reasons”
Treating a protruding mole is a simple procedure. After numbing the skin, we will remove the projecting part of the mole with scissors or a scalpel. We may also send the removed portion to a laboratory for microscopic examination. After the procedure, the wound will heal to leave a flat mole, but the color generally remains the same. As a rule, dark moles leave dark spots. Quite often we can remove the entire mole. Moles sometimes grow annoyingly coarse hair, and it may be safely removed by shaving or plucking. Permanent removal of the hair, which has roots deep within the skin, requires complete surgical excision of the mole. Electrolysis of the mole should be avoided.
Are birthmarks cancerous?
Congenital pigmented birthmarks are considered benign but have a small chance of turning into skin cancer, and should be considered for removal. Vascular birthmarks, such as port wine stains and strawberry hemangiomas, are completely benign. If you do have a birthmark that you’d like to remove, we provide photodynamic therapy and microneedling with radiofrequency to stimulate the growth of healthy, new skin cells.* Learn more about photodynamic therapy here and microneedling here.
Request treatments in Pinellas Park, Florida
For mole and/or birthmark removal in Pinellas Park, request an appointment at Skin Wellness Center. Our team of dermatologists and skin experts will assess your skin and determine the proper treatment for you. To get started, request an appointment online or give us a call at (727) 545-3376. We look forward to seeing you!