Moles, also known as nevi, are common pigmented growths on the skin that develop when melanocytes, the cells responsible for producing pigment (melanin), cluster together.
They can vary in size, shape, and colour, ranging from small, flat spots to raised, dark-coloured bumps. Moles are typically round or oval, with a smooth border and a uniform tone, although they can also appear irregular.
The development of moles is primarily influenced by genetic factors and sun exposure. Individuals with a family history of moles are more likely to have them, and excessive sun exposure can lead to the formation of new moles or changes in existing ones. Additionally, hormonal changes, such as those occurring during pregnancy, can also contribute to the development of moles, and cause some changes in their appearance.
While most moles are harmless, some can exhibit characteristics associated with a higher risk of skin cancer. These include irregular borders, uneven coloration, a diameter larger than a pencil eraser, and changes in size, shape, or elevation over time. Such moles should be monitored closely and may require professional evaluation.
It’s crucial to be vigilant about changes in moles and seek medical attention if any suspicious characteristics arise. Regular skin checks by a dermatologist can help detect potential issues early, allowing for prompt intervention if necessary.
Moles can be removed for both medical and aesthetic reasons. Patients can speak with a specialist practitioner at Bank Medispa if they have such concerns who will discuss their options. Our mole removal procedure requires a series of treatment sessions that involve the use of a CO2 laser.
This modern approach to mole removal works to fragment the pigmented cells which are naturally disposed of by the body. In cases where the possibility of skin cancer is a concern, we may recommend a referral so an excision procedure can be performed.