Moles & Birthmarks
Known as nevi (singular "nevus"), moles and other birthmarks are benign pigmented spots or patches of skin that range in color from tan, brown and black (moles) to red, pink or purple (vascular nevi, such as strawberry hemangiomas or port wine stains). Though most birthmarks are harmless, they may develop into cancer. Moles exhibiting any of the following warning signs should be examined by a professional immediately:
- Larger than six millimeters.
- Itches or bleeds.
- Rapidly changes in color, size or shape.
- Has multiple colors.
- Is located where it can't be easily monitored, such as on the scalp.
Depending on their depth, location and color, as well as the patient's skin type, age and other factors, treatment for benign but unattractive birthmarks may take the form of laser or pulsed light therapy, or surgical excision.
Any new or changing mole should be evaluated by your dermatologist immediately. Any moles that appear to be abnormal should be removed and sent to the laboratory for examination by a dermatopathologist. Dr. Cole offers a full skin examination on your first visit and yearly thereafter to check for abnormal moles and skin cancer.
If Dr. Cole determines that a mole is benign (non-cancerous), a mole may be removed for cosmetic reasons. In this case, insurance will not cover the removal of moles which are removed for cosmetic reasons.
The price of mole removal depends on how large the mole is, where the mole is located, and the method used to remove it.