Professional Cosmetic Surgery and Healthy Ageing Clinic
The aesthetic impact of an unmarred, blemish free face cannot be emphasised enough. Marks on the facial skin can be in the form of pigmentation, topical scars or moles. Moles occur either by birth (possibly with hereditary associations) or due to a few external factors. Although moles are more noticeable in the face they can appear in any part of the body. When on visible areas of the body, depending on the location, one may want to remove them for PREVENTION ( change in to cancer), cosmetic purposes; on occasion inconvenience is a recognised reason to have them removed, even if they are not in the normal field of vision.
This is a procedure to remove a nevi (mole). This may be because it has shown changes in shape ,size, lumpiness, colour, crusty, bleed ,painful or unsightly, . They are removed by either by means of a)excision (cutting) followed by stitches, b) shaving with blade , c)cauterization (a tool is used to burn away the mole) or d)by means of laser ablation (although in most cases this is not the preferred method)
Usually an excision with or without stitches is carried out, depending on the depth of the mole and the type of cosmetic outcome desired.
- An unsightly skin lesion (mole) that affects the aesthetic appearance
- A mole that is inconveniently positioned and interferes with easy everyday activities
- A mole that has changed in colour or size and needs to be tested for malignancy
- Moles in certain areas of the body, with high probability of scarring (removed for cosmetic reasons) Scarring more eye catching than mole itself
It must be kept in mind that there is in most cases there is a chance that the skin lesion is malignant. Hence one must be vigilant to any significant changes in size, shape or colour of the mole and consider having it tested for malignancy. It is routine practice to send all removed moles for testing to ensure they are not cancerous.
Moles morphing can be done with spcialised photography for review.
Anaesthesia and duration of procedure
It is usually performed under local anaesthetic as an Outpatient at the surgeon’s office.
Excision without stitches : The surgeon shaves the mole off flush or slightly below the level of skin using a scalpel. An electrical instrument to cauterize or burn the area or a solution on the area to stop any bleeding is then applied. A topical antibiotic is placed on the wound and the wound is then covered with a bandage. A specialised dressings like sea weed to stop the bleeding and heal faster.
Excision with stitches : Moles removed by excision (cutting) and closed with stitches are usually deeper , larger, darker in colour and or in the line of cresse to hide the scar easily. The mole is mapped out and the area is cleaned with antiseptics and numbed with local anaesthetic injection. A scalpel is used to cut a border around the mole and deep to its roots itself. The size of the border is upto the surgeon’s discretion deepening on the possibility of malignancy of the mole to be removed. Depending on the depth, stitches are placed either deep (these are absorbed by the body and do not have to be removed) or on the upper surface of the skin (these don't absorb and will be removed later).
Laser Removal: Laser ablation using co2 or erbium laser by cutting or peeling laser.
Some redness surrounding the removed area is normal and will settle in 4 weeks time. If sutures were used they will be removed at the end of one week. It is essential to keep the treated area away from the sun for 6 weeks following the procedure.
1 week, 4 weeks, 6 months
Limitations of end results
The results of the procedure are permanent in most cases but recurrence cannot be ruled out.