A mole is a skin growth which comprises many pigment cells heaped up together. The scientific term for mole is naevus.
Most moles are not cancerous. However, there is a small risk of evolving into cancer, especially those moles which are already present at birth.
The "danger signs" to look out for in a mole are its:
A... asymmetry (whether it looks unequal when we draw an imaginary line to bisect the mole)
B... border (whether it is irregular and fuzzy)
C... colour (whether it has various shades, or changing in colour)
D... diameter (more than 6mm)
E... enlarging (out of proportion to the progress of the other moles in the body)
F... feels painful, or ulcerates, or bleeds, or simply "different" from the other moles in the body
The exact cause of moles is unknown. The vast majority of moles is not inherited and is not due to anything happening to the mother during her pregnancy. One theory attributes moles to a misplaced deposition of precursor cells (those that eventually give rise to pigment cells) during embryonic stage of foetal development. However, moles may continue to develop in a person from time to time.
Removal of moles is by surgical excision only.
Most moles are easily removed under local anaesthesia.
The information provided on this page does not replace information from your healthcare professional. Please consult your healthcare professional for more information.
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