Most adults have anywhere from ten to forty common moles. Many of those adults continue developing moles into their forties.
If you’re an adult struggling with common moles, mole removal is a great option. It’s a necessity for anyone with a concerning atypical mole.
In this mole removal guide, we discuss the difference between the two. Both are prime candidates for removal here at ZG Wellness and Dermatology in Crestview Hills.
However, it’s important to be seen as soon as possible for an atypical mole. Read now to find out what kind of mole you have and what to expect for its removal.
Diagnosing a mole is easy since it only requires a physical examination. If you want to learn if a mole is cancerous or not, that requires a more thorough investigation.
If you’re interested in seeing a dermatologist to remove a mole for cosmetic reasons, the diagnosis is fairly simple. They’ll have you come in for an exam.
During the exam, they’ll look at the mole you want to have removed. They may also check the rest of your body in a skin exam.
The dermatologist wants to be sure that your moles are not abnormal. If they’re not, they’ll move on to the next step, which is treatment.
If you’re seeking mole removal because your mole is atypical, the dermatologist has you come in for an exam. Similar to cosmetic mole removal, they’ll examine the mole and any other moles of concern.
The dermatologist will likely take pictures to have them to refer back to. Atypical moles can change over time. These reference photos are important.
Moles that are large and irregular in shape, change in size, or have odd coloring call for a different treatment. These are atypical moles and could be, or develop into, melanomas.
Not every mole needs to be treated. Many moles are simply cosmetic issues and nothing more.
However, in some cases, moles need to be biopsied for malignancy. In most cases, people don’t like the way they look and want them removed.
The treatment for both options is mole removal. Depending on the mole and desired outcome, the dermatologist will select one of the following options:
- Surgical Excision
- Shave Excision
- Laser Surgery
- Electric Current
Atypical moles need to be biopsied and sent away for further testing. Shave excision gives the most samples for testing.
However, shave excision isn’t the best when looking at deep tumor margins. It is also difficult to identify the type of skin cancer this way.
Your dermatologist will speak with you about the different options and find the best one for you.
To prepare for your appointment, gather information and come with questions. The doctor wants to know the symptoms you’ve been experiencing, any new changes to your moles, and the medications you’re taking.
This does include supplements and vitamins. Certain ones interact poorly with other medications. Make a handy list of those and a list of your questions. Also, go to your appointment without makeup and nail polish.
You want the dermatologist to be able to thoroughly inspect your skin. Makeup gets in the way of that. Let them know if you’ve previously had moles removed. If they had a biopsy report, bring that with you to your appointment.
The dermatologist will probably ask you when you first noticed the mole. If you have a family history of melanoma, you need to disclose that.
They’ll also ask what changes have occurred with the mole. If you don’t already know those answers, then try to find them out before your appointment.
This helps them in their diagnosis and treatment method. Consider asking what treatment method they advise or prefer. Ask them if they believe the mole is cancerous.
Write these and any other questions you have down before your appointment. Many people become overwhelmed and forget when they’re on the spot.
The dermatologist sanitizes and numbs the area before cutting or shaving away the mole. They utilize topical anesthetic and sometimes injection anesthetic.
Bleeding is completely normal. They apply pressure and then stitch the skin together.
If it’s an atypical mole, they’ll send the tissue away for testing. The area is covered with a bandage, and you’re sent home.
Post-op care is straightforward. Treat the area as you would a wound. The wound needs to stay clean to prevent infection. However, your daily activities aren’t affected.
Your provider will give you aftercare instructions. Follow them, and you shouldn’t have any issues. The wound heals completely in two or three weeks. There shouldn’t be a noticeable scar.
It typically takes a few days to get the results of the mole biopsy. Hang in there and try to stay patient during this process.
Don’t Remove It Yourself
Never try to remove a mole at home. It’s dangerous for a few reasons.
First, the mole could be malignant. You could be getting rid of the tissue needed to identify cancer or other issues.
Second, you run a greater risk of infection. Dermatologists are not only trained for surgery, but also in sanitation.
Third, you might leave a nasty scar. You might also change the mole so that it looks cancerous but isn’t.
Visit Us in Crestview Hills
If you’re dealing with an unsightly or concerning mole, don’t wait to visit a dermatologist. The surgery is manageable, and the results look beautiful.
It’s in your best interest to be seen as soon as you can for atypical moles. It stops cancer from spreading.
We hope this mole guide has helped prepare you for your mole removal. If you’re in the Northern Kentucky area, we’re located in Crestview Hills and can help you. Learn more about our mole removal today!