Mole Removal Surgery

Mole Removal Surgery

Also known as “barnacles”, seborrheic keratoses tend to emerge as small lumps that develop into a growth that can more closely resemble a wart. While most are brown in color, they can range from tan through to black. They can be flat or raised in appearance and can also vary in size. They are most common in middle age

Why do they occur?

The exact reasons why seborrheic keratoses occur are not fully known but they are thought to be hereditary. Spending time in the sun is also believed to play a part in their development as they often crop up on skin that has been exposed to the sun. However, as they can also occur on areas of the skin that have not received any exposure to the sun, this may be a less significant factor in comparison to other skin growths.

Are they dangerous?

Seborrheic keratoses are rarely dangerous and are almost always benign. If you notice that a growth has suddenly increased in size, becomes black or starts to itch or bleed, as these can be signs that it has become cancerous. A biopsy in which a piece of tissue is removed and sent off for analysis will be needed to determine whether this is the case. If new growths start to appear, seek the advice of a dermatologist as this can indicate a health problem that needs attention.

How are they diagnosed?

Seborrheic keratoses may look similar to moles, warts and melanoma but they can be differentiated from other skin growths due to their wax-like appearance. In addition to this characteristic, they also look as though they have been “pasted” onto the skin. If you can picture candle wax being allowed to melt onto the skin, this is similar to how seborrheic keratoses look.

How can they be treated?

As they are not dangerous unless they become cancerous, seborrheic keratoses are most commonly removed because they are causing irritation or look unsightly. Removal can take several different forms, and these can include:

Cyrotherapy: Seborrheic keratoses can be frozen with liquid nitrogen so that it falls off some time afterwards. A permanent white spot may remain after the treatment.

Electrosurgery/curretage: Electrosurgery involves numbing the growth and burning it with an electric current so that it can be removed with a surgical instrument known as a curette. There may be some slight bleeding after the treatment has been performed but this can be stopped by applying pressure to the area. A blood-clotting chemical may also be used.

Shaving: Seborrheic keratoses may also be shaved off using a razor blade that is able to target the growth without disturbing the skin underneath. Once this is complete, a chemical agent is applied to put a stop to any slight bleeding that may have occurred during the removal process. If silver nitrate is used as the chemical agent, it will result in the wound turning a dark shade of brown. While this is likely to disappear as the skin starts to heal itself, the color may remain. Because of this, aluminimum chloride is more likely to be used on facial areas.

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