How to tell when you might need mole removal

18 October 2018

There are a number of reasons why you might consider having a mole on your body removed. The most important being to prevent cancer, but there are of course other practical or cosmetic reasons.

Whether you’re considering getting a mole removed or not, here are a few ways to tell when you might need to have a mole removed.

1. It’s a new mole

If you discover a new mole on your body, get your GP to examine the mole to see if further action is required.

They will refer you to a dermatologist if they feel that your new mole shows any signs of having abnormal cells.

Although new moles can appear at any time, it’s always best to seek a professional opinion first.

You should especially refrain from searching any symptoms online or reading about other people’s experiences, as it might cause unnecessary panic.

2. You’ve noticed a change in shape or colour

If you notice any changes in shape or colour to a pre-existing mole, the same advice applies.

The NHS recommend that you speak to your GP as a first port of call if you notice any of the following changes:

  • The mole has developed into two or more colours
  • The mole itches, flakes or bleeds
  • The mole has become larger or inflamed

These symptoms are sometimes, but not always, a sign of melanoma - a type of skin cancer. In this case, the mole will be removed through the NHS. If it is a harmless mole, you may choose to have a cosmetic procedure to remove the mole.

3. It has the potential to be cancerous

If a new or pre-existing mole has caused you concern but has been deemed harmless, you may still need to have it removed.

For example, your GP or dermatologist may determine that the mole has the potential to develop into a cancerous mole in the future and recommend preventative mole removal.

4. It’s in a place that’s vulnerable to getting sunburnt

We all know the importance of SPF protecting our skin in general, but it can be extra-important to make sure moles don’t get burnt, too.

We can’t always predict when we might get caught out without applying sunscreen, or where there’s a mole near clothing where cream can be rubbed off by mistake.

It might be easier in the long-term to avoid future problems in these areas by having mole removal surgery.

5. It keeps catching on clothes and jewellery

Although still technically a cosmetic reason for removal, a mole catching on clothes and jewellery can lead to bleeding or scarring. You might therefore need to get the mole removed as a preventative measure.

Whether it’s for health or cosmetic reasons or just peace of mind, as you can see, there are a number of reasons why you might need to consider mole removal surgery.

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