There are a couple of different reasons to have a mole removed. For one, you may be getting a mole removed so that you don’t risk developing melanoma, as an atypical mole has a 1% chance of becoming cancerous.
You may also be thinking of removal because your mole is in an uncomfortable place or because it’s a cosmetic concern. Regardless of the reason, our providers at Dermatology Associates of Central NJ have you covered when it comes to removing your mole.
That’s why we’ve composed this helpful guide so that you know exactly what to expect when you come in for mole removal.
What is a mole?
A mole is a cluster of discolored skin cells, called melanocytes, which are usually brown or black in color. Moles can grow anywhere on your body, either alone or in groups. As time goes on, you may find that your moles become raised, change colors, or develop hairs.
Because growing or changing moles can be a sign of melanoma, you’ll want to come in to get your mole checked if it has changed over time. We’ll typically do a biopsy to get the mole tested to see if it’s cancerous and needs complete removal.
Moles can also grow in places that are more visible, like on your face, or in other areas of your body that can be uncomfortable. In this case, you may want to have them removed for cosmetic or comfort reasons.
How a mole is removed
You’ll typically have your mole removed right in our office. There are two ways that we can remove your mole, including shaving it or surgical removal.
Shaving the mole
Shaving is usually reserved for smaller moles. We start by numbing the area for your comfort, and we then use a small blade to shave off the mole and whatever tissues may lie underneath it. With shaving, you won’t need stitches.
With surgical removal, we also start by numbing the area. We then use either a scalpel or a specialized circular blade to cut out both your mole and some of the healthy skin that surrounds it. We then stitch the area closed.
In either instance, you’ll have a scar that remains. The scar will generally take about 1-2 months to heal, become less red, and flatten over time. We can remove or reduce the appearance of scars using laser treatments, steroid injections or other cosmetic treatments.
For more information on mole removal, call one of our offices in Old Bridge, Freehold, or Union, New Jersey, or book an appointment right here on our website today.