Atypical Mole Removal
Atypical moles are also called dysplastic moles, and they are very common. In fact, an estimated one out of every 10 Americans has at least one atypical mole. Atypical moles are larger than common moles with borders that are irregular and poorly defined. Atypical moles vary in color, ranging from tan to dark brown shades on a pink background. Their irregular borders may include notches, or they may fade into surrounding skin and include a flat portion that is level with the skin.
While atypical moles are considered more likely to develop into melanoma than regular moles, not everyone who has atypical moles gets melanoma. With a higher melanoma risk involved, it is important to have any atypical moles evaluated particularly when there’s any family history of melanoma. Dr. Carroll “grades” or categorizes atypical moles based on the cellular features she observes microscopically. She visually categorizes the degree of disorganization seen within the cells that make up the mole to determine whether the atypia is mild, moderate or severe.
Each patient is different, and Dr. Carroll takes into account a variety of factors before recommending whether an atypical mole should be removed or more aggressively watched for any change. Dr Carroll utilizes Dermoscopy to help determine if a particular lesion is atypical and needs to be biopsied or excised. Dermoscopy is the examination of the skin using skin surface microscopy mainly to evaluate pigmented skin lesions. Dermoscopy allows Dr. Carroll to properly diagnosis possible melanoma.