Close up of dermatologist examining patient birthmark in clinic

Why do we have moles and birthmarks?

When we are born, our skin may not be perfect. In fact, many individuals are born with marks or growths on the skin, which may be moles, birthmarks, or even freckles. Pigmentation and skin growths are common and typically aren’t problematic for patients. But what do you know about moles? Are birthmarks a concern? How do I know if a growth is a more serious concern, such as skin cancer? The team at Florida Westcoast Skin and Cancer Center can educate patients on how to know the difference between the types of skin concerns and know when to connect with a dermatologist for assistance. 

Why do we have moles and birthmarks? 

Moles, birthmarks, and freckles are all types of pigmentation that may be noticeable on the skin. In most of these situations, the development of pigmentation on the skin is caused by an overgrowth of blood vessels (those which product vascular birthmarks or hemangiomas) or pigmentation cells (creating congenital naevi or moles). In most cases, these marks and growths on the skin are benign (non-cancerous). However, moles should be evaluated regularly as they can be the first sign of skin cancer if they change in shape, size, color, and border. 

How do I monitor pigmentation for more serious health concerns? 

Patients should be diligent about visiting the team at Florida Westcost Skin and Cancer Center at least once a year for an evaluation by our team of professionals. Dr. Michael Scannon and his associates cannot stress how important these screenings can be in detecting cancer early enough for successful intervention. When caught and treated in the earliest of stages, most patients will experience a high survival rate after their diagnosis. Treatment may include excision, Mohs micrographic surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. 

How do I find out more about the marks on my skin? 

If you are concerned about specific growths on the skin or just want to schedule a routine skin cancer evaluation and screening, we welcome you to call our office at (813) 877-4811. We are conveniently located at 4200 North Armenia Avenue, Suites 1 and 2 and accept new patients from in and around the Tampa, Florida communities.

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