Clinical Dermatology

Mole Checks

Uncertainty has no place on your skin. If you are unsure about your mole, let Redding Derm take a look.

Mole Checks

A dermatology skin exam is the ideal venue for routine mole checks. These ‘mole checks’ are especially important for people with numerous moles, ‘funny looking moles’ (FLMs), or a family history of melanoma in a sibling or parent. People with any of these factors have a statistically increased risk of developing melanoma. Melanoma is a potentially dangerous skin cancer that is curable if detected early.

If a mole starts to grow, itch or bleed, see a dermatologist. - American Academy of Dermatology

Early detection is enhanced by provider experience, training, and skill. Skin exams in ‘at risk’ people can be tricky because melanoma, especially in its early stages, looks very much like normal or funny looking moles that at risk people tend to have in abundance. The ABCDE method of evaluating moles, widely described on the internet, is enhanced by a general dermatology skin exam. Recommendations on evaluation and management of suspicious moles vary greatly. The more skilled the dermatology professional, the more precise and ‘low impact’ the evaluation and biopsy process is likely to be. Over-biopsy and under-biopsy of suspicious moles can be greatly reduced by consultation with an experienced dermatology practice.

Mole Check Exam Mole checks are simple and straightforward. For a complete mole check, a patient dresses in a gown with underwear in place. The patient is laid prone on an exam table and checked carefully from head to toe with a bright mobile surgical light and a high powered magnifier. Once the patient is upright, the back is then checked. In most cases, the mole check process only takes a few minutes and is painless. While a mole that looks suspicious in the mirror or by direct view may cause proper concern, there is no reason to be concerned about the exam. While keeping your dignity in mind, mole checks are performed in a calm and comforting environment.