Moles are usually just brown or black (or sometimes red) skin growths caused by clusters of pigment cells called melanocytes. They can appear or bulge anywhere on the body. While almost everybody has at least one mole somewhere on the body, you can have it removed if you don’t like the way it looks or feels, or if it gets in your way when you shave or dress. You might feel tempted to remove the mole all by yourself at home by looking up for home remedies and treatments. But this is not advisable at all! It can cause bleeding, severe bruising, scarring, and may even lead to a skin infection.
Most moles can be harmless. But in a worst-case situation, moles can be cancerous and can lead to serious health complications if they are not removed on time and in the right manner. If you are planning to get your mole removed, it is always advisable to undergo a mole biopsy to determine if there is any form of skin cancer. During biopsy, if the cells that make up the mole look normal and healthy, there won’t be any extra treatment necessary. But if the mole appears abnormal or cancerous, an appropriate doctor can help you figure out the next steps for the treatment.
What is the difference between a mole removal and a biopsy?
Mole removal is a procedure to remove moles from the skin in a way that minimizes scarring and can be performed to fulfill aesthetic or medical reasons or a combination of both. You can be asked to make a visit once again for post-removal check-ups for doctors to check your progress, monitor your moles, and ensure healthy skin. That’s because if any of the cells are left over after the treatment, a mole can regrow, or cancerous cells from a mole can spread to other areas.
A mole biopsy involves taking cells or samples from the mole by gently shaving the surface of the mole and the surrounding skin. The sample is then analyzed in a lab to identify whether the cells are normal or cancerous. This is the difference between a mole removal and a biopsy.
What to expect during the mole removal procedure?
Having a mole removed is a simple, low-risk procedure, and it can take anywhere from a few minutes to an hour, depending on the size and depth of the mole. You may experience minimal pressure on the skin, but you won’t feel any discomfort or pain due to local anesthesia. And regardless of the procedure, the doctor might instruct you on how to keep the area as clean as possible.
The recovery or overall healing time varies based on how big or deep the mole was and whether or not you got stitches. However, one should feel back to normal anytime from a few days to a few weeks. In case you get stitches, they’ll come out 6-7 days later.
What happens after the mole removal treatment?
A normal mole won’t grow back after it’s removed completely unless it has cancer cells within. And the only negative effect of mole removal is that the procedure may leave a small scar. Occasionally, one might have to deal with soreness or itching in that area. And keep in mind that there is a risk of infection until the wound heals completely. It is important to carefully follow the post-treatment skincare, and keep the wound clean, moisturized, and covered. One might also experience bleeding from that area if taking certain blood-thinning medications. In such a case, you can gently put pressure on the area with a cloth/gauze and hold it for up to fifteen-twenty minutes. If the bleeding doesn’t stop, please call the doctor immediately. You can also call the doctor to take a look if you’re experiencing pain after the mole removal, or you notice that your mole is growing back.
You can read more about how moles are treated here at the office of Dr. Fisher. Using different techniques, we can safely and effectively remove moles from any part of the body. Mole removal can prevent the spread of cancerous and precancerous cells and address your cosmetic concerns with a simple procedure that is effectively painless due to anesthesia. So if you decide you want your mole removed or notice any changes in it, you can book an appointment with Dr. Fisher.