Do I need to have another excision after an atypia mole was removed for biopsy?

I am 34, female. I had a mole on my lower leg shaved and sent for biopsy. The pathology result was "moderate atypica" but it also stated "biopsy margins negative." Why do I need to go back to have more skin removed with stitches? This is the third atypia mole I've had. I would like to know other opinions on whether or not I need to go back for another excision this time and why. Thanks.

Doctor Answers 2

Do I need to have another excision?

For moderately atypical moles, a 2mm margin is generally preferred. If the physician feels adequate margins were not obtained with the biopsy, the physician will re-excise with 2mm margins. Some physicians will monitor area for recurrence if the margins are clear with biopsy.

Orange County Dermatologist
4.3 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Atypical Moles

The degree of atypia in a mole is determined by the pathologist and not the clinical appearance of the mole by itself.  If the pathologist examines the mole and determines that the degree of atypia is moderately atypical, it is typically recommended to have a margin of normal tissue removed or a re-shave of the area.  Please use a board certified dermatologist for the best results.

Michele S. Green, MD
New York Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.