Most moles are harmless, but changes in color, size, shape, or texture could indicate a cancerous growth. The expert team at Aesthetic and Clinical Dermatology Associates in Hinsdale and Saint Charles, Illinois, diagnose and remove moles in patients of all ages. If you’re concerned about moles, call the nearest office today or request an appointment online.
Moles, also called nevi, are skin growths that often look like dark brown or black spots that are round or oval. Moles can appear anywhere on your skin. Their surfaces can be rough or smooth, flat or raised. They can develop singly or in groups.
Rarely moles can become cancerous. It’s essential to monitor moles and other pigmented patches on your skin routinely. Make an appointment at Aesthetic and Clinical Dermatology Associates if a mole grows, changes, or looks unusual.
Moles develop when melanocytes, the cells that produce the pigment that gives your skin its color, grow in clusters instead of spreading out.
Most moles develop during childhood and the teen years, but they can develop later in life too. Nearly every adult has 10-40 moles. Because moles tend to last about 50 years, some fade away over time.
Some moles can become cancerous and turn into melanoma. Factors that put you at greater risk of developing melanoma include:
Also called congenital nevi, these kinds of moles are present at birth. Large congenital nevi are more than 2 inches, or 5 centimeters, in diameter.
If you have more than 50 moles, you’re at increased risk of melanoma.
Also called atypical dysplastic nevi, these moles are irregularly shaped and larger than average. They often have dark brown centers and light, uneven borders.
You must keep an eye on moles so that you notice any changes early. The Aesthetic and Clinical Dermatology Associates team recommends doing a monthly exam of your entire body, including the armpits, scalp, and bottoms of your feet.
Use the ABCDE guide to determine if a mole or spot is becoming cancerous:
If you should notice any of these conditions, call Aesthetic and Clinical Dermatology Associates right away. Their expert team will do an exam and might biopsy the mole to determine if it’s cancerous. They might also simply surgically remove it.
If you’ve noticed anything suspicious about a mole, call Aesthetic and Clinical Dermatology Associates today or request an appointment online.