Our skin, regardless of age, frequently displays areas of different color or texture. On the face, this can be distracting, unattractive, or unaesthetic, and even make it difficult to wear makeup or eyeglasses. Some of these spots are moles. Moles or beauty marks are benign skin lesions that are present throughout life. These are typically brown or black in color, but may be a pale beige or even pink.
They occur alone or in groups, and some people have many of them. Moles result from the growth of melanocytes (the pigment-making cells in the skin) rather than individually. They can change in color with age (lighter or darker) and sometimes darken with sun exposure, pregnancy, or hormone therapy.
It is very important to remember that not all bumps or spots are moles, and a thorough examination with a doctor is necessary before making a plan for removal. Other lesions may be related to skin cancers (see procedure pages for Skin Cancer Removal and Mohs Surgery Reconstruction section), neurofibromas, or even indicate a systemic issue such as an allergy or autoimmune process. Any color changes, bleeding, or associated symptoms should prompt a visit to your doctor.
Dr. Ransom removes moles in sensitive areas of the face and neck using meticulous techniques to ensure your scar is nearly imperceptible. Mole removal is performed under local anesthesia, and occasionally with mild sedation, depending on patient preference. This procedure can be performed alone or in combination with other surgical or non-surgical aesthetic treatments. More information is available during your consultation.
Any patient with a mole on the face, head, or neck, who dislikes the cosmetic appearance of the area is a candidate for mole removal. It is important to remember that not all bumps or pigmented spots are moles. During your consultation, Dr. Ransom will examine the lesion to be removed. If he feels that there is a possibility of a pathology other than a benign mole, he will either biopsy the lesion or remove it with an appropriate surgical margin. As a face specialist, Dr. Ransom understands that even a tiny lesion or scar on the face can cause significant concern. He will work with you to make sure that you have the best possible aesthetic outcome.
- Question: Is it possible that my mole will come back after it’s removed?
- Answer: When a mole is completely excised, including the portion that projects below the skin surface into the deeper layer of the skin (dermis), it will not grow back. Unfortunately, many people request mole removal and then undergo a “shave” procedure – where only the portion of the mole that is above the skin surface is removed, typically with a small razor blade or knife. Many doctors will use a “shave” technique because they are inexperienced in making incisions in the delicate facial tissues, and are concerned that will be unable to hide the resulting scar. When this technique is used, moles almost always come back over time. Dr. Ransom is a face specialist and has dedicated his practice to facial surgery. He uses a variety of specialized methods to plan your procedure and close the wound resulting from mole removal, helping make your scar nearly imperceptible after healing.
- Question: My mole is in a really obvious place, and I’m worried about the scar… How does Dr. Ransom make sure that the scar isn’t worse?
- Answer: Many patients worry about having a scar from cosmetic mole removal. In order to minimize the appearance of any scars, Dr. Ransom aligns the incision with the normal lines of motion (relaxed skin tension lines) in the face and the borders of the facial units. This helps to hide the repaired area. In addition, Dr. Ransom uses a multi-layer closure to ensure that there is no tension on the wound. This requires tiny sutures and special plastic surgery techniques. Finally, some patients may choose to undergo a laser treatment of the area a few months after the mole removal; this further assists in blending the repaired skin with the neighboring areas.
Please note that all patients are different and individual healing times and results may vary. The statements regarding procedures and recovery made here are general rules.