What is a mole, and how can I get rid of it? What you need to know about moles and mole removal.
Your body has skin cells called melanocytes and these cells produce melanin, which determines the color of your skin. Melanocytes can grow in clumps, producing a mole. Nearly everyone can have between 10 and 40 moles and they can be many different colors or textures, but they are usually less than 6 millimeters in diameter.
Moles can be an early sign of skin cancers like melanoma, and melanoma can be fatal. This is why you should do a self-exam periodically. According to the Mayo Clinic, there are signs to look for, including:
- An asymmetrical shape
- An irregular border
- A change in color
- A diameter larger than 6 millimeters
- A change in shape, color, size or height
You should see your dermatologist at South County Dermatology if you have a mole that is:
- Showing any of the signs listed above
- Burning or itching
- Bleeding or oozing
- Growing back after a previous removal
- New and you are over 30 years old
South County Dermatology has offices in Narragansett and East Greenwich, RI to serve your needs. They offer a full range of skin services including mole removal. Your dermatologist may recommend:
- A surgical shave of your mole-- your dermatologist will numb the area and cut around the mole and underneath it. Shaving is often used for smaller moles and no suturing is required.
- A surgical excision of your mole-- your dermatologist will numb the area and cut out the mole with a punching instrument. Surgical excision requires sutures.
Mole removal is usually done on an outpatient basis and only takes a short appointment. If you think your mole might be the beginning of something worse, like skin cancer, you need to make an appointment with South County Dermatology at the Narragansett or East Greenwich, RI offices. Don’t wait! Your life may depend on it!
Removal of a mole is an important part of catching skin cancer early. Be in trusted hands by calling our East Greenwich, RI dermatology office at (401) 471-3376 today!