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Nothing to Worry about!

"Common benign skin growths"
By: Stef dela Cruz, MDNothing to Worry about!

The most common benign skin growths include acne, skin tags, keloids, moles, and common warts. Acne vulgaris, known as “pimples” to many, refers to a disease of the hair and oil gland unit. More than eight out of ten adults suffer from variable stages of acne, according to a 2009 study. Common skin growths related to acne include blackheads, whiteheads, and pimples.

Skin tags, also known as acrochordons, are quite common among middle-aged and elderly populations. They have a predilection for the eyelids, nape, underarms, and trunk. They don’t pose any health issues, except perhaps that they become an aesthetic concern.

Keloids are fibrotic skin growths that are usually associated with skin trauma. Keloids may appear in an area with no apparent previous trauma; this spontaneous keloid formation often occurs in the chest and other sites of predilection. Unlike hypertrophic scars, keloids have a claw-like appearance and spread over and beyond the scar’s borders. The size of keloids can be reduced using corticosteroids injected directly into the skin growth.

Moles, also known as nevi, are benign skin growths composed of cells called melanocytes. These cells produce melanin, explaining the dark color of many nevi. Some moles exist at birth (congenital), while others appear later in life (acquired). Some moles may become malignant, turning into a melanoma. Any change in diameter or color can signal this change. Asymmetry in the shape of the mole may also point to a tendency for malignancy.

These are just a few of the many different skin growths. It is best to consult a doctor for any weird-looking skin growth: although the majority of these lesions are benign, there is the occasional malignancy—and that is best caught early on.

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