Mole & Birthmark Removal Specialist

Dermatology Surgical And Medical

Michael R. Lerner, MD

Dermatologist located in Bankers Hill, San Diego, CA

While some people simply don't like the sight of their moles, these spots also have the potential to be cancerous. San Diego, California dermatologist Dr. Lerner can check moles for cancer and provide mole removal treatments if needed.

Mole & Birthmark Removal Q & A

What is a mole?

A mole is a common growth that looks brown or black in color. They can appear anywhere on the body, especially before the age of 30. These spots are made up of a cluster of skin cells, which would otherwise be spread out over a larger area.

Do moles need to be removed?

Moles are normal, so they do not all need removal. However, some moles can be cancerous. Certain types of moles are more likely to turn into this cancer. These include congenital nevi that are on the body at birth and dysplastic nevi that are large and have an uneven shape and coloring. Some people choose to get rid of a mole if they don’t like the way it looks or feels.

What are indications of a problematic mole?

It could indicate a problem if a mole changes in size, shape, or coloring. The ABCDEs rule says to look at asymmetry, border, color, diameter, and evolution. It could also be problematic if a mole has symptoms, such as itching, pain, tenderness, or bleeding. Another cause for concern is if a mole appears after the age of 30. In these cases, it’s important to have a dermatologist check the mole.

How does mole removal work?

When a dermatologist is concerned about a mole, he can choose to take a piece of the mole for a biopsy and then remove the whole mole if cancer is found, or he can excise the mole before biopsy. The removal process involves cutting out the mole along with some healthy skin surrounding it. Then, the doctor stitches the area closed.