What is Dysplastic Nevi?
Dysplastic nevi are abnormal-looking yet benign moles — meaning, they are noncancerous. These can cause a lot of concern for men and women who are looking for early signs of skin cancer since they can look a lot like melanoma. Sometimes these atypical moles indicate an elevated risk of developing skin cancer, which is why it's important to undergo a skin exam performed by a board-certified dermatologist, like Dr. Adean Kingston. At Adean Kingston, M.D., PLLC in Dallas, Texas, we are here to help educate you on the differences in your moles and whether there is any need for concern. Dr. Kingston also offers a variety of treatment options if you wish to remove your moles for medical or cosmetic reasons.
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Typical moles present themselves as round, flat or raised brown spots. Almost everyone has at least one mole on their body at some point in their lifetime, and they aren't usually a cause for concern. Genetics also plays a big role in the development of moles. Although melanoma can start on normal, healthy-looking skin, they can also arise inside an atypical mole. It's important to know the ABCDE rule for melanomas.
"Asymmetry" means that they are not mirror images from left to right. "Border" means the edges are irregular and not smooth. "Color" refers to very black, multiple colors within a single mole or even pink (amelanotic). "Diameter" refers to a mole that is enlarging "Evolving" means that they have changed size or features from the last time you saw them. Consider checking yourself monthly and taking pictures to monitor your moles.
Causes and Risks
If you are prone to abnormal-looking moles and other skin cancer warning signs, you should be proactive about your skin care. If you have a light complexion, several existing moles, or freckles, be extra cautious. Having a family history of skin cancer and routine tanning can also increase your risk of developing melanoma. Keep tabs on the moles present on your body so that you can track any changes that occur, and don't hesitate to contact Adean Kingston, M.D., PLLC about any concerns.
If you have one or more moles and have never had a skin exam, it's a good idea to come in for a checkup. If suspicious, Dr. Kingston can examine the mole and perform a microscopic analysis. From there, she can provide her recommendation on whether to biopsy the mole or to continue monitoring it with photographs, yearly dermatology exams and self skin exams at home. When considering biopsy, Dr. Kingston will also review your family history and other risk factors. Regardless, it's crucial that you have regular monitoring of new or existing atypical moles so in case one is malignant, it can be treated appropriately as soon as possible.
Report New Findings Today
Prevention is essential when protecting yourself from skin cancer. In addition to monitoring your moles, you should also wear sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher anytime you will be exposed to direct sunlight. Protective eyewear, clothing, and hats are also highly recommended when you will be in the sun for long periods of time. If at any point you become suspicious of a mole, call Adean Kingston, M.D., PLLC immediately to set up an exam. When it comes to skin cancer, the best outcomes are the result of early diagnosis and thorough treatment.