- Diseases, Disorders & Conditions
Surely, You Know What a Melanocytic Naevus Is
Melanocoytic Naevus or Mole
Appearance and Causes
Moles are easily identified by their round,brown to black, spot-like appearance on the skin. It is not abnormal to see skin colored moles or reddish to purple ones. Some moles tend to darken as one ages and continued exposure to the sun can be a contributing factor. Pregnancy is reported to cause further darkening as well. Some moles may lighten overtime, others regress and finally disappear due to the immune system attacking the moles.
Moles often appear together with freckles. While moles are both raised and flat. Freckles or otherwise called as "sun spots", are always flat. Freckles often appear during Summer and light complexioned individuals with light colored hair are mostly targeted. Sunscreen would be a very good friend during sunny days.
Heredity is one main cause for developing moles. Moles can grow on any part of one's body. Run your fingers through and they may feel flat or raised.There is no specific age of breakout, they may present on one's skin at any age, though some say, most would appear by the time you reach 30.
Health Risks & Cautions
Moles do not always pose health risks. Hence, removal is not necessary. There are some considerations though that may put you at risk for skin cancer (Melanoma).
- Watch for moles that grow after mid-thirties.
- Monitor moles that turn irregular or blurry.
- Monitor Large Moles, those over 1/3 in. in diameter may be a cause for concern.
- Monitor evolving moles that continue to grow may be a health risk.
- Watch for bleeding, unusual redness, or scaling in the area.
- Watch for tenderness or pain in the area.
In any of the above cases, a visit to a skin dermatologist may well be needed. Monitor periodically, especially if your family has a history of skin cancer. Skin biopsy is one sure way to assess danger. The most effective way to remove a mole is by minor surgical procedures. That being said, success rate is not guaranteed. Moles may grow back after a surgery.
This is a skin sampling procedure; skin is removed for processing and examination through a microscope.
Melanoma Cancer Statistics
- Skin cancer | American Academy of Dermatology
Skin cancer is the most common form in the U.S. Over 8,500 people are diagnosed of the disease daily. Melanoma is 5th most common cancer in men and 7th for women
- Skin cancer statistics | Cancer Research UK
UK statistics show 90% Survival Rate and 80% Preventable Cases of Malignant Melanoma