Mole Is Raised With Red Ring Around It- What To Do?

My Husband Recently Had a Mole Checked by the Family Doctor.  The Mole Has Been on His Shoulder for Years but Recently a Red ring appeared around it and the mole raised 5 mm. It is bigger than a pencil eraser and dark brown/not smooth. The doctor wants to remove it in the office. He plans on taking margins also. He was trying to figure out how deep he needed to go. This doesn't sound right to me. I read that a punch biopsy with follow up by a dermatologist would be the better way to handle this situation. We know the mole is suspicious, and the doctor doesn't want him to wait to get into a specialist. liastdbubut

Doctor Answers 3

Removal of mole with red ring

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First, this mole may not need to be removed. Dermatologists see patients referred by other doctors for "atypical moles" that end up having normal moles on a daily basis. Therefore, have the mole checked by a dermatologist first. If the mole has to be removed, there are many ways of doing it. The method depends on the mole, level of worry for malignancy, and location.

New York Dermatologist

Excisional biopsy is the best. punch biopsies would need some normal tissue for the best diagnosis

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a punch biopsy could miss normal tissue and you may not find out the depth of the lesion. An excisional biospy is the best way to get the best diagnosis. if you do a shave or punch biopsy it could make the second biopsy harder to make a good diagnosis. I don't agree with the other answers. Get multiple opinions.  We have other informative videos and information on our website and a link is included to help you find us.

Philip Young, MD
Bellevue Facial Plastic Surgeon

The Best Way to Biopsy a Mole

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In my experience, a shave biopsy is usually the only way to go to have a mole checked for cancer, especially one that is growing on the shoulder. It typically leaves a minimal scar and takes only a few minutes to do. If the biopsy results show it to be cancerous or pre-cancerous then a second step, a complete excision with uninvolved margins, is necessary to ensure its complete removal. Only then will the scar that results from this procedure be necessary. I recommend your husband have his mole evaluated by a board certified dermatologist.

Mitchell Schwartz, MD
South Burlington Dermatologic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

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