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By Robert Kokoska
There are several reasons to have a mole removed. While skin cancer is always the main concern for removing moles, some people choose to have moles removed for cosmetic reasons. There are different types of moles. Some families have a genetic precursor to have atypical moles which puts those family members at a high risk for cancerous moles or other types of skin cancer. While it is always important to try and prevent the formation of these types of moles this cannot always be prevented.
Moles can be raised or flat. The most dangerous moles have uneven edges and are not circular shaped. These moles are best removed by a medical professional. The mole removal is done in office in most circumstances. Most moles can be successfully removed in one office visit. Larger moles may require several office visits to be safely removed.
There are two types of surgical methods of mole removal. The first technique used a tool that burns the mole off of the skin. This is caused excision by cauterization. This is used on moles that are not extremely deep. For deeper moles excision by cutting is required. This type of mole removal requires stitches to close the incision. For larger moles this process may need to be performed in stages to allow healing between mole removal procedures. Laser removal has been attempted but unsuccessful for mole removal due to the depth of the moles in the tissue.
Mole removal should always be done by a trained medical professional. Home mole removal should not be performed no matter how minor the mole seems to be. Complications can arise from mole removal including infection, nerve damage and even scarring. A medical professional can reduce the chances of these complications. Some patients also have reactions to the anesthesia used during the procedure.
For either mole removal procedure the area will be cleaned with an alcohol like substance and then numbed with lidocaine. Many physicians prefer to wait 15 minutes or so after the lidocaine is give to reduce blood to the treated area. This will lessen the bleeding after the procedure. Once the area is prepped for the mole removal procedure the doctor will use the chosen method to remove the mole. A topical antibiotic will be applied after the procedure to prevent infection.
Once the procedure has been completed it is up to you to keep the wound clean and protected. Your doctor will probably send the tissue removed off to be evaluated for cancerous cells. You should receive the results in a few days. Once you have had the mole removal process completed you should take care of your skin to prevent future moles from needing to be removed. It is important to wear sunscreen when out in the sun and to reapply the sunscreen every few hours. You can also wear a hat or other protective clothing to minimize the effects of the sun. It is important to always have any odd shaped moles or other skin irregularities checked by a medical professional.
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