Mole Removal : Understanding how to check moles

Mole treatment . Mole removal

Mole Removal : Understanding how to check moles

We all have moles and they’re uselessly harmless. However on occasion, a mole may change or evolve, it’s important to get any changing moles checked out.

What are moles?

A mole is a coloured and small spot on the skin. They’re often oval-shaped or
round with a smooth edge or they can be flat or raised and have different
textures. You may also find that some moles are darker than others and can have hair growing out of them.

Mole Mapping

Changes to moles can indicate skin cancer. A good way to track moles is to
undergo mole mapping. Mole mapping uses a specialist technology system that combines photography with a digital dermatoscopy. This means it’s possible to map all your moles on your body and spot any changes over time so you don’t have to.
This is particularly good for those hard to see areas. Many of us have moles on our backs and shoulders, as this area generally gets a fair bit of sun in the summer it’s important to track the moles in this area. Unfortunately, it’s not the easiest of areas to see, which is why mole mapping is a great way to make sure you don’t miss any changes.

If you’re interested in Mole mapping, we are one of the very few clinics in the UK that offer this service. We can perform a full-body mole mapping service to give you peace of mind- Scientifically proven approach in early detection of the most aggressive skin cancer- melanoma.

What changes do I look out for?

It’s important to book an appointment with a dermatologist if you notice:

  • A mole that gets larger or more raised from the skin
  • Changes to the shape
  • If the mole looks uneven
  • Any changes to the colour. (Particularly if it gets darker or has more than 2 colours)
  • Have a mole that starts itching, crusting, flaking or bleeding

What if it’s Skin Cancer?

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer and is split into two categories. Melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer.

Melanomas or ‘malignant melanoma’ is less common but the more dangerous of the two. Non-melanoma skin cancers are Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC) and
Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC).

If you’re concerned about the appearance of a mole, please contact us for a
consultation where we can identify, diagnose and excise any suspicious moles,
but most importantly, give you peace of mind from a dermatologist you can trust.

Treat and diagnosing Skin Cancer

With any time of cancer, it’s important that you get them checked out early as
early diagnosis leads to early intervention and better prognosis.
The type of treatment you have will depend on the type of skin cancer diagnosed.
We offer fast-track appointments to ensure immediate diagnosis and treatment of skin cancer.
There are different treatments available and the type of treatment you have will
depend on the mole, the severity of the cancer, location etc. If you’d like to have a mole checked, or even removed for your own peace of mind, please contact us.

Acne: Can we get it at any age?

acne treatment manchester

Acne is a chronic, inflammatory skin condition that affects about 80% of people at some point in their lives.

It commonly occurs during puberty, but it can occur at any age. This is because the sebaceous glands which activate during puberty produce oil. These are stimulated by hormones produced by the adrenal glands to cause whiteheads, blackheads, pimples, cysts, and nodules.

Who does Acne affect?

According to the NHS, acne most commonly develops on the face. However, more than half of people with acne also present symptoms on the back and around 15% on the chest area. Acne is most common in girls from the ages of 14 to 17, and in boys from the ages of 16 to 19. Whilst it often disappears when a person is in their mid-20s, it can continue into later adult life.

Acne is known to run in the family, and episodes can also be caused by hormonal changes, which occur during the menstrual cycle or pregnancy. As a result, there is a significantly higher prevalence in women than men later in life. Hormonal therapies can often benefit women with acne. Even if
you’re not sexually active, the combined oral contraceptive pill is known to help improve symptoms, although these benefits may take a year to become visible.

There are several self-help techniques to help with controlling acne:

  • Don’t wash affected areas of skin more than twice a day.
  • Remove make-up before bed.
  • Shower following exercise.
  • Wash hair regularly.
  • Avoid using very hot and or very cold water.
  • Don’t use toothpaste on the skin – although they contain antibacterial substances, it also contains substances that can irritate and damage the skin.

There are far more effective and safer treatments available.

Although it is tempting, try and avoid squeezing spots as it can cause scarring. It is important to remember acne is a chronic condition and cannot be cured. If you develop mild acne, you should speak to your pharmacist who will likely prescribe a variety of creams, lotions and gels. If your acne is severe, you may require a course of antibiotics or stronger creams.

To discuss a personalised plan for your acne treatment, please get in touch.

 

Blog Post Author: William Frederick Bolton

Laser Hair Removal: What is it and why get it?

laser hair removal treatment manchester

Despite being commercially available for over 20 years, many potential recipients of laser hair removal are unsure about the treatment procedure and whether they should consider using it. To answer these questions, we have put together a quick guide:

What is Laser Hair Removal?

Laser hair removal is a medical procedure that uses a concentrated beam of light to remove unwanted hair. The laser emits a light that is absorbed by the pigment melanin in the hair. The heat this light produces damages the hair follicles in the skin that produce hairs, inhibiting or delaying future hair growth.

The procedure does not stop hair growing indefinitely but delays hair growth for long periods.

Do I need more than one laser hair removal session?

Multiple treatments are needed for initial removal, and maintenance treatments may be required as well. It usually requires a series of two to six treatments. The intervals between these treatments will vary depending on the rate of hair growth in the area being treated.

Are there any side-effects?

There is a risk of side effects that will vary depending on skin type, hair colour and the type of treatment you are receiving. The most common side effects are skin irritation and pigment changes which can darken or lighten the affected skin. Both are temporary and usually disappear after several hours.

What are the benefits of Laser Hair Removal?

This treatment is mostly used to remove hair that is viewed as unaesthetically pleasing to the recipient. If you’re not happy with shaving, tweezing, or waxing to remove unwanted hair, laser hair removal is a long-term option that may be worth considering.

Common treatment locations are the legs, armpits, upper lip and the chin. However, it is possible to treat unwanted hair in nearly any area except the eyelid or surrounding area.

To learn more about Laser Hair Removal, please click here.

Blog Post Author: William Frederick Bolton

Mole Awareness Clinic

mole awareness . MOLE CLINIC . MOLE MAP CLINIC MANCHESTER

As summer approaches and the sun comes out of its hibernation, it’s the time of year when we will be taking off the extra layers of clothing to allow the sunshine on our skin. For dermatologists this is a busy time when those funny looking moles grab the attention of patients and their partners. The ‘ugly duckling sign’ refers to identification of moles which stand out as being distinctly different in appearance. This is an important sign which dermatologists use to identify ‘melanoma’, which is a type of skin cancer, in patients who have many moles. Some patients may have hundreds of moles and are referred to as having the ‘atypical naevus syndrome’ where the ‘ugly duckling sign’ is of particular relevance.

How frequently should I undergo a mole check?

For those who have only a few moles and low risk of melanoma (no personal or family history of melanoma, no history of sun bed use or excessive sun exposure, dark skin) a self-skin examination once every few months would suffice. On the other hand, patients who have the atypical naevus syndrome, previous history of skin cancer/s, strong family history of skin cancers, fair skin, suppressed immunity or history of excessive sun exposure, I would recommend once monthly self-skin examination. Good quality digital pictures of the moles should be taken at baseline.

How do you differentiate an innocent mole from one which is melanoma?

The popular ‘ABCDE’ method comes in handy when assessing moles against baseline photos.

A= Asymmetric. Each one half of the mole differs from the other.

B= Border. A mole with uneven or notched border.

C= Colour. A mole with different shades of grey, black, brown, red, white or blue.

D= Diameter. A mole which is 6mm or more in its diameter.

E= Evolution. A mole which appears larger than the baseline pictures.

I also add an ‘F’ to this mnemonic.

F= Funny symptoms of itching, bleeding, crusting and discomfort in a mole are unusual and should never be disregarded.

What to expect when you see a dermatologist?

If you have any of the alarming signs, you should seek advice from your GP who can refer you to a dermatologist. Any suspicious mole should be examined by a dermatologist who would undertake a full-body skin examination and a dermatoscopic examination of the moles to look for signs of melanoma. Dermatologists are trained to use these hand held illuminated magnifiers which highlight specific signs of melanoma which may not be apparent to the untrained eyes.

Dr Vishal Madan is a Consultant Dermatologist at The Wilmslow Hospital, 52 Alderley Road., Bridgewater Hospital Manchester, BMI The Beaumont Hospital. For more information or to book an appointment with Dr Madan please email: enquiries@manchester-dermatologist.co.uk.