Most people don’t pay attention to their moles unless the spot is on their face or an area that affects their appearance. But it’s important to notice the moles on your body because they can turn into melanoma, the most dangerous type of skin cancer. The board-certified dermatologists at Northstar Dermatology in North Richland Hills TX, perform routine full-body skin exams and evaluate any suspicious-looking moles. If you want a mole removed for cosmetic reasons or you’re concerned about the appearance of a mole, schedule an appointment online or call the office today.
A mole is a pigmented lesion on your skin that develops when melanocytes — the cells that give your skin color — grow together in a cluster. Most moles are harmless, but they can also turn into the most dangerous form of skin cancer: melanoma.
Exposure to UV light from the sun and tanning beds damages the DNA inside melanocytes. When the DNA changes, the cells start to grow faster than normal, resulting in melanoma.
Like all other types of skin cancer, Northstar Dermatology can cure melanoma when it’s diagnosed and removed at an early stage. When a cancerous mole goes undetected, however, melanoma rapidly spreads to other parts of your body. After it metastasizes, melanoma is hard to treat and often becomes deadly.
When you meet with Northstar Dermatology, they carefully evaluate the problem mole and perform a full-body skin exam to look for any other potential problems. When an atypical mole is identified, there’s only one treatment and that’s to remove the mole using a shave biopsy or excision.
During a shave biopsy, your Northstar Dermatology provider uses a thin blade to shave away the mole. They excise a mole by cutting around it, including removing the small margin of healthy skin around the mole.
Your provider sends the tissue to a lab where it’s examined for the presence of cancer. The lab tech also checks the margins to determine if all the cancer was removed.
If you have any questions about moles or other lesions on your body, call Northstar Dermatology or book an appointment online today.