Know your ABCDE’s. A mole that exhibits any of the following warning signs should be examined by a dermatology provider.
- A = Asymmetry: One half of the mole does not look like the other.
- B = Border: Not smooth or seems to blur or project out.
- C = Color: Not uniform tan, brown, or pink.
- D = Diameter: Larger than six millimeters or the size of a pencil eraser.
- E = Evolving: Any change in size, shape, color, elevation, or another trait. Any new symptom such as bleeding, itching, or crusting.
If you have concerns about your moles, or if you feel that one “doesn’t seem quite right”, that is a reason to come in for a skin check. We always tell our patients that we would rather check a spot and tell you it is fine and relieve your worries than have you ignore something that requires timely attention and treatment. Early detection of skin cancer saves lives.
On the other hand, if you develop growths or moles that you know are benign, but for whatever reason they are bothersome and you would like them removed, we are happy to provide this service to you as well. First, we must evaluate the growths in question to determine what they are and the best way to safely remove them. This evaluation is done as an office visit and may be covered by insurance. However, the actual removal of benign growths is typically NOT covered by insurance. When considering such treatment, it is important to understand that there is no way to prevent the return of treated moles or the growth of new moles. Depending on the type of benign growth being removed, periodic treatment of new and recurrent lesions may be required. Some lesions commonly managed in this way are skin tags, seborrheic keratosis, small cherry hemangiomas, and syringomas.