MOLES & KERATOSES

Most people have moles, spots or keratoses present on their skin. Most of these growths are benign.

MOLES

These growths appear as clusters of heavily pigmented skin cells that may be flat or raised above the skin’s surface. While most pose no danger, some may develop into malignant melanoma, particularly those that have mottled colors or irregular edges. If there is any doubt, usually a biopsy is performed to determine if it is benign or malignant. Often, moles are removed for cosmetic reasons, or because they’re constantly irritated from rubbing against clothing and jewelry.

KERATOSES

These rough red or brown patches on the skin are usually found on areas exposed to the sun. They sometimes can develop into squamous cell carcinomas. Most, however, are treated either with hydrocortisone creams or with simple shave excision.

TREATMENT

Treatment of moles and skin lesions: In most instances, raised moles or kerataoses can easily be treated in the office treatment room by performing a “shave excision”. This involves just removing the mole at the level of the skin and the base of the mole is cauterized. A scab forms over the site and new skin grows back leaving, in most instances, an area that is non-detectable and without scarring. The mole, once removed, is always sent to the pathologist to rule out any microscopic evidence of skin cancer.