SKIN LESION REMOVAL TREATMENT
Skin lesion removal means removing a mole, wart, skin tag or other skin growth. This may be by having it cut out, frozen off, treated with special creams, or using heat, laser or light therapy.
Most skin growths (lesions) are harmless and don’t need to be removed. But your doctor may recommend you have a lesion removed if it’s causing you significant problems, or if there’s any doubt it could be cancerous. You can also have lesions removed if they’re bothering you or you don’t like the way they look.
Types of skin lesion
Skin lesions are areas of skin that are growing abnormally, or look different to the normal skin surrounding it. There are many different types of benign (non-cancerous) skin lesions. They include the following.
- Moles – small, dark-coloured growths on your skin, which normally appear during childhood.
- Dermatofibroma – firm, raised growths that can be brown, purple or red in colour. You may develop a dermatofibroma after an insect bite or minor injury.
- Actinic keratosis – rough, scaly patches of skin, which develop on areas of your body exposed to the sun. Actinic keratoses have the potential to change into a type of skin cancer known as squamous cell carcinoma. Because of this, your doctor will usually recommend removing them.
- Seborrhoeic keratosis – grey, black or brown raised lesions that may appear on your body or scalp. They’re more common as you get older.
- Keratoacanthoma – rapidly-growing lesions that have a solid, scaly core. They normally develop in areas of skin exposed to the sun. Keratoacanthomas can look very similar to squamous cell carcinomas, so they usually need to be removed to confirm the diagnosis.
- Skin tags –small, flesh-coloured bumps on your skin. These are very common, and often form where your skin creases or gets rubbed (for example, on your neck or in your armpits).
- Pyogenic granuloma – these are small, bright red nodules that often develop after an injury. They tend to bleed easily, and it’s often recommended that they’re removed.
- Sebaceous cysts – round, fluid-filled lumps, which range in size from a few millimetres to several centimetres. They can become infected.
- Warts – small, rough lumps that are caused by infection with the human papilloma virus (HPV).
When should a skin lesion be removed?
Your dermatologist will recommend you have a skin lesion removed if there is any suspicion that it could be cancerous, or could become cancerous. Some benign (non-cancerous) skin lesions look very similar to skin cancer. The only way to tell for sure whether or not it’s cancer is to have the lesion removed and examined in a laboratory.
Skin lesions that have no signs of being cancerous don’t need to be removed. If a skin tag, mole or other lesion is causing you significant problems though, for instance it’s catching on clothing, you may prefer to have it removed.
You may also decide you want a skin lesion removed if you’re unhappy with how it looks. It’s also important to realise that many of the procedures are likely to leave a scar. Your doctors will do their best to keep the scar to a minimum, but it may end up bothering you almost as much as the original lesion.
How are skin lesions removed?
Skin lesions can be cut out, frozen off, treated with special creams, or destroyed using heat, laser or light therapy. What treatment you’re offered will depend on the type of skin lesion you have and where it is on your body.
Your doctor will discuss with you what will happen before, during and after your procedure, and any pain you might have. This is your chance to ask questions so that you understand what will be happening. You don’t have to go ahead with the procedure if you decide you don’t want it. Once you understand the procedure and if you agree to have it, you’ll be asked to sign a consent form.
Techniques to remove a skin lesion include the following.
This technique is used for skin lesions that rise above the skin or are in the upper layer of skin.
Your doctor uses a small blade to remove the outermost layers of skin after the area is made numb. The area removed includes all or part of the lesion.
You usually do not need stitches. At the end of the procedure, medicine is applied to the area to stop any bleeding. Or the area may be treated with cautery to seal blood vessels shut. Neither of these will hurt.
SIMPLE SCISSOR EXCISION
This technique is also used for skin lesions that rise above the skin or are in the upper layer of skin..
Your doctor will grab the skin lesion with a small forceps and lightly pull up. Small, curved scissors will be used to carefully cut around and under the lesion. A curette (an instrument used to clean or scrape skin) maybe used to cut any remaining parts of the lesion.
You will rarely need stitches. At the end of the procedure, medicine is applied to the area to stop any bleeding. Or the area may be treated with cautery to seal blood vessels shut.
CURETTAGE AND Radiofrequency ablation
A technique that uses high frequency electrical current may be used for skin lesion removal. This is called radiofrequency ablation.
It may be used for superficial lesions that do not need a full thickness excision.
A laser is a light beam that can be focused on a very small area and can treat very specific types of cells. The laser heats the cells in the area being treated until they “burst.” There are several types of lasers. Each laser has specific uses.
Laser excision can remove:
- Benign or pre-malignant skin lesions
- Small blood vessels in the skin
Cryotherapy is a method of super-freezing tissue in order to destroy it. It is most commonly used to destroy or remove warts, actinic keratoses, seborrheic keratoses, and molluscum contagiosum.
Cryotherapy is done using a cotton swab that has been dipped into liquid nitrogen or a probe that has liquid nitrogen flowing through it. The procedure usually takes less than a minute.
Complete excision (excision biopsy)
This is a type of skin biopsy, in which the whole skin lesion is cut out and removed. It’s the standard way to remove a lesion where there is any possibility that it might be cancerous. You’ll usually have a local anaesthetic before a skin biopsy, which will block any pain. Your doctor will then use a surgical blade to remove the whole lesion, plus a margin of ‘normal’ skin around the edge.
Your doctor may use adhesive strips or a special type of glue to close smaller wounds or stitches for larger wounds. They’ll then apply a plaster or dressing to cover the wound.
Following surgeries are available at Skin Masters Clinic to treat your vitiligo patches:
- Mini punch grafting
- Split thickness skin grafting
- Suction blister grafting
- Cellular grafts :
-cultured autologous melanocyte transplantation
-non cultured melanocyte rich epidermal cell suspension