Moles are defined as spots on the skin caused by irregular melanin production in a specific area. This overproduction of melanocyte cells can be spurred by sun exposure and/or hormonal changes, and creates moles that vary in shape, size, and color. Most moles are benign and harmless, simply seen as a cosmetic irregularity; but there are instances in which a mole can become cancerous and potentially life-threatening. To avoid this, there are mole removal options.
Types of Moles and Relation to Cancer
There are many different types of moles, varying mostly due to the layer of skin where the melanocyte cells became over-active. Moles can be:
- -Circular or oval
- -Raised or flat
- -Symmetrical or asymmetrical
- -Brown, black, red, or flesh-colored
Depending on the type of mole you have, you may need to keep a close watch to make sure it doesn’t turn into melanoma. Red moles, particularly large moles, asymmetrical moles with irregular edges, and moles that change or vary in color or shape should be examined by a doctor.
What If I Require Mole Removal?
Do regular mole checks. If you have moles, especially if you have questionable ones, you should always wear sunscreen to prevent them from becoming cancerous. However, if you don’t like the mole and would rather just have it removed for health or cosmetic reasons, there are a few mole removal options. This includes:
- -Surgical removal: A specialist can surgically remove the mole by cutting it out of the skin. Moles that are notably raised or large may need stitches, and will likely leave a small scar. This is the method used to remove moles that are suspected of having cancerous cells.
- -Cryotherapy: This technique uses liquid nitrogen to freeze the mole and destroy the abnormal melanocyte cell tissue. For deeply rooted moles, the liquid nitrogen can be administered with a needle or probe.
- -Laser mole removal: Laser energy, such as that of an Nd:YAG laser or a Spectra Q-Switch laser, can target the specific tissue and destroy it. This method also prevents bleeding by sealing of the blood vessels simultaneously.