Mole Removal Surgery
Mole removal surgery depends on factors such as the type of mole, the size of the mole, and the location of the mole. Mole removal is undertaken for a variety of reasons such as to establish a diagnosis, remove a changing mole or for cosmetic purpose. Whatever your reasons, we offer consultation, examination and detailed discussion of the treatment options available for mole removal surgery.
What is a Mole?
A mole is a collection of special pigment producing cells called melanocytes. There are generally two types of moles you can get. The most common (acquired) moles start appearing during or even before puberty. In about 1-2% of the population, (congenital) moles are present from birth.
Moles can change in appearance over time, and with puberty and pregnancy. It is important to monitor your moles for recent changes and see a doctor if your moles appear suspicious.
Why do I get moles?
Congenital moles that are present from birth are usually driven by genetic factors, and are programmed to develop even before a child is born.
Acquired moles are so common that they are not even considered abnormal. From several studies, we know that individuals of a lighter skin colour will have more moles, moles are often triggered by sun exposure and acquired moles may run in families.
What types of moles are there?
Moles can take on different shapes and sizes, and may change with puberty, pregnancy and age.
Moles may appear at anybody site, and can take on different colours such as brown, black, blue or skin colour. They can appear flat, and may protrude from the skin (which is common on the face).
The acquired moles can range from a few millimetres in diameter to giant hairy congenital moles more than 20cm diameter seen in a newborn.
What is Melanoma?
Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer, and accounts for the majority of deaths arising from all types of skin cancer. Melanoma has the highest incidence in Australia, New Zealand and North America.
Following this easy to use ABCDE algorithm, any recent change in your mole warrants a visit to a doctor.
- Asymmetry of shape or colour
- Border irregular
- Colour variability (More than 3 colours)
- Diameter greater than 6mm
- Evolution or change over time
How are Moles diagnosed?
Moles are usually diagnosed based on their clinical appearance and their history of development.
In cases, where diagnosis is uncertain, we use a Dermatoscope, a specialised instrument to examine the mole under polarised light and magnification to better characterise the mole.
Moles that remain suspicious, or have recently changed are sent for a biopsy.
Mole Removal Surgery
The majority of moles can be safely left alone after examination, and no further treatment is required.
You may wish to remove your moles if you are concerned of a recent change in your mole, the mole causes skin irritation or for cosmetic purposes.
The mole removal surgery method depends on the size, type of mole, your skin type and whether a biopsy needs to be done.
Mole removal surgery treatment options:
- Excision biopsy
- Shave biopsy
- Laser mole removal