Moles: examination, removal, professional observation

Most residents of Russia have more than a dozen moles. True, many have no idea how to monitor them and when they need to be deleted (and whether or not at all). In this article, we will dot the i’s and tell you how to examine your skin on your own, which moles should be feared, and when you should see a doctor.

Why moles are dangerous

Moles, scientifically called pigmented nevi, can turn into a malignant tumor – melanoma. Melanoma is really dangerous, because it can lead to the death of a person in a few months. Of course, not every mole (nevus) will necessarily turn into melanoma, but any of them theoretically can do it. People with fair skin and a large number of nevi are at particular risk. Another “aggravating factor” is heredity; if any of the relatives has or has had melanoma, then the person has an increased risk of developing this tumor.

How can you reduce your risk of melanoma? Now scientists believe that the main method of prevention is sun protection. Sunburn and general exposure to sunlight increase the risk of developing melanoma. Accordingly, in order to reduce it, you need to use products with a high SPF, do not walk under the scorching sun and sunbathe less often.

Self inspection

It is useful for people of any age to regularly examine their skin for new growths. Of course, you don’t have to spend a lot of time and run to doctors with every mole you find. But there are some symptoms that will help you pay attention to changes in the tissues during the examination of moles. A mole that is not yet going to turn into melanoma: 

  • symmetrical;
  • has a clear outline;
  • evenly colored;
  • retains its size, does not increase or decrease;
  • does not itch and does not cause any discomfort.

Accordingly, if the nevus begins to somehow change (whether it is a blurring of the border or a change in color), itches, hurts, or causes any other discomfort, then it is time to see a doctor – this is a mole that must be observed professionally. Remember that a healthy organ does not remind of itself in any way.

Which doctor examines moles

If you find any abnormalities in your moles, you should immediately make an appointment with a dermatologist. The doctor will examine the mole and conclude whether it is worth removing it or not. As a preventive measure, you can undergo an annual examination, during which the doctor can record the condition of your skin in a photo. These data are saved, and during the next routine examination, the dermatologist will be able to tell exactly which nevi have changed and which have remained the same. 

How to remove a mole

Numerous beauty clinics offer cheap laser removal of a mole. Of course, this is a really simple and inexpensive procedure, but it has one significant drawback – it does not leave the tissue of the mole for examination, which is critical for detecting melanoma in the early stages. What is the best way to remove moles? If you go to a dermatologist with complaints about a change in the mole or discomfort, he will first perform a dermatoscopy – an examination of the formation on the skin using a dermatoscope. If necessary, the doctor will remove the nevus, leaving the material for histological examination. After that, a thorough analysis of the removed mole will be carried out. 

If it turns out that it was melanoma, then the patient will be prescribed appropriate treatment (which would not have been when contacting a cosmetology clinic).

event_note May 18, 2021

account_box Dr. Peter B Milburn

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