Mole removal is a cosmetic surgery procedure. It can be conducted by laser or by other surgery procedures.
Moles can exist at birth, or can begin to appear over time.
These are dark spots or irregularities found in the skin, of various shapes and sizes. Moles can appear anywhere on the skin, from the nose and other facial area, as well as arms and chest areas. There can be a single mole, or it may be in groups.
Some moles go unnoticed, and some (like facial “beauty marks”) are even considered attractive. On the other hand, some people feel bothered by moles, and moles can even be a health risk.
There are some benefits to removing moles, including:
• Facial (or other) moles may get in the way of shaving.
• When moles run against clothing or jewellery it may create skin irritation
• Improve the look (“clear and uniform” skin).
• Improve self-esteem.
If you consider removing a mole you should first be examined by a doctor who has experience in treating moles to help determine whether the mole is cancerous. Then you should consult with a qualified cosmetic surgeon or dermatologist to perform the procedure.
Very important: a mole can be a pre-cancerous sign. It can often be completely removed before it causes a serious health risk.
The majority of moles are benign (non-cancerous) and have no threat to health. To determine if a mole is cancerous, a small portion is examined through a biopsy or microscope analysis. This piece of tissue is usually examined at a pathology lab.
You are, if you can physically and emotionally benefit from having the mole removed. Do not forget, however, that cosmetic surgery can improve the situation but does not guarantee perfection.
Before removing, the area is cleansed and then an anaesthetic is applied to numb the area. The type of mole being removed determines what technique is used. Depending on the technique, stitches may or may not be used.
Procedure with stitches
For excision of the mole, the surgeon uses a scalpel to cut the mole and a border of good skin surrounding it. The surgeon will determine the size of this border. Stitches are placed either deep within the skin, or on the upper surface, depending on the depth of the excision.
Procedure without stitches
For the procedure that involves no stitches, a scalpel is used to shave the mole allowing it to be flush with the surrounding skin. Then using an electrical instrument, the doctor cauterizes the area to stop any bleeding. Topical antibiotic is applied to reduce risk of infection. Shaving removes the protruding surface of the mole, but it can leave mole cells beneath the skin and may grow back.
Laser treatment is one of the methods used for mole removal.
This technique does not result in scarring, however, this is not a method used for treating deep moles because the laser does not penetrate deeply enough.
Mole removal typically takes less than an hour to perform, depending on the amount of moles to be removed.
The amount of discomfort afterward varies on the method used. If there is discomfort, it can be relieved with prescribed pain medication. A scab usually will develop, and then heal within a week or two. Also any redness that occurs will disappear within two to four weeks. Most scars that do appear slowly fade over time.
While risks are minimal, a possible risk that can occur is infection. The risks associated with mole removal also depend upon the technique used.
A common condition that can occur after the excision procedure is scarring. Some scars fade away, but some can be permanent. Scars can be eliminated through skin resurfacing or other scar revision procedures.
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