Moles are a common form of skin growth. In some cases, borderline lesions may be non-cancerous. Surgical removal of non-cancerous moles may not always be necessary, but some people choose to remove moles regardless of whether or not they are cancerous.
Primary care doctors sometimes can remove moles that aren't cancerous. For example, an office procedure can remove a benign (noncancerous) mole in a matter of minutes when it is benign (noncancerous). The treatment of benign (noncancerous) moles is multifaceted. Based on factors such as the mole's location, type, and size, your doctor will determine which procedure to use to remove your mole (or moles). Non-surgical mole removal consists of four types: excision, shave removal, laser removal, and freezing.
Whether the mole is removed for cosmetic reasons or due to cancer, surgically removing it leaves a scar. Scarring is likely to subside over time, depending on factors like; age, type of surgery, and mole location.
It may be hard to see exactly where the procedure took place. It may also be harder to disguise than you would like.
A mole removal scar can be minimized using a variety of products and methods. To begin with, it may be useful to understand how moles are removed and what the healing process entails.
How Are Moles Removed?
A dermatologist can usually remove a mole in one office visit. Sometimes, a second appointment is needed.
The two most common procedures for removing moles are:
Shave excision. Dermatologists remove moles with a thin, razor-like tool. Electrosurgical feathering may be performed with a device with a tiny electrode at the end. By feathering the edges of the wound, it helps minimize the appearance of the excision. Shave excisions do not require stitches. A microscope is usually used to check for symptoms of skin cancer after the mole has been removed.
Surgical excision. In comparison to a shave excision, this procedure is deeper. The mole is cut out completely and down to the subcutaneous fat layer, and the incision is stitched up. Afterward, a biopsy is performed to see if the mole is cancerous.
It is never a good idea to remove moles yourself. Bad scarring and infection are risks too great. In addition, cancer cells may be left behind if the mole is cancerous.
All wounds to the skin can leave scars, from surgery to a scraped knee. Scars are your body's natural way of healing wounds and closing the skin.
Occasionally, however, large, raised scars result from abnormal scarring. In the healing process, the body makes too much collagen, which results in hypertrophic scarring. The occurrence of hypertrophic scarring is more common with severe burns or significant skin injuries but can occur with any type of wound.
The term keloid refers to an abnormal overgrowth of scar tissue, most commonly found in people with darker skin.
Hypertrophic scars tend to be smaller than keloid scars. Various treatments can be used to reduce their size or stop their growth, including laser treatments, corticosteroids, and other injections. As opposed to hypertrophic scars, keloids grow beyond the boundary of the injured area.
How to Prevent and Reduce Scars:
Several treatments and preventive measures can be used to prevent a noticeable scar or at least reduce its size.
If you are considering trying any of these strategies, you should talk to your doctor first. After mole removal, you don't want to risk infection or other complications. Moreover, avoid doing anything that would make the scarring more noticeable.
1. Avoid the sun
2. Don’t stretch the scar
3. Keep the incision site clean and hydrated
4. Massage the scar
5. Apply pressure therapy
6. Wear a polyurethane dressing
7. Experiment with laser and light therapies
8. Try corticosteroid injections
9. Freeze with cryosurgery
How Does Laser Mole Removal Work?
Lasers can be used to remove certain moles. Most commonly, this is done to remove flat, non-cancerous moles. A laser destroys mole tissue by delivering short bursts of light radiation. Laser therapy may require two or three sessions to remove a mole completely. However, when moles are in hard-to-reach places such as the ears or on sensitive or highly visible parts of the body, such as the face, laser removal may be an option. Additionally, lasers can be used to remove more than one mole at the same time.
How Fast Can a Mole Grow Back After Removal?
If a mole has been removed completely, then it will not grow back. After surgical excision, the tissue will be checked in the lab to ensure that the whole mole has been removed. As long as there is a border of normal tissue all around the mole, there shouldn’t be any cells left behind. This type of removal will be performed if there is a risk of skin cancer, as it’s vital to ensure that all the cancerous cells are eliminated.
Healing Time After Mole Removal:
The required recovery time after a mole removal depends on the individual. Young people tend to heal faster than older adults. And not surprisingly, a larger incision will take longer to close up than a smaller one. In general, expect a mole removal scar to take at least two to three weeks to heal.
Some methods to reduce scarring should be started once the wound is healed. But initial care for the wound is essential for preventing infection and giving you the best chance at minimal scarring.
Pay close attention to what your doctor or nurse says about how to care for the wound and how to change the dressing when you’re under their care.
Almost everybody has one or more moles. Infected moles are not common, but they do happen. If home cleaning doesn’t cure it quickly, you should see a doctor. Because any changes in a mole can be a sign of developing skin cancer, it’s important to immediately see and consult your doctor if you’re having a problem with a mole.