Raised Mole Removal? (photo)

Can I do laser removal of this mole with a beautician using a laser? It's always been there and never really bugged me too much, but if the costs aren't too high and I'm not trading it for a scar, why not. The mole is slightly bumpy with the center being of a darker pigment. What's the risk of this being malignant?

Doctor Answers 9

Mole removal on the face

The fact that you are having doubts about an aesthetician performing a mole removal should be applauded.  I would defer medical procedures to board certified specialists.

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 94 reviews

Moles: what is the best way to manage?

The average adult has about 40 moles (some have hundreds!) and most of these cause no problems. But when a mole changes its appearance or a decision is made to remove, what's best? Raised moles can sometimes be shaved flat (still may send for a biopsy). Flat moles can be excised and sutured, trading the mole in for a small scar(usually a good trade off). It is important to know the skill and training of whoever is doing this even if it seems relatively "minor"!  Do you want a non-physician performing a surgical procedure on your face, for example?  Discuss pros and cons of all procedures with your physician.  If there is any doubt about a diagnosis, a biopsy (examination of the mole by a trained pathologist or dermatopatholist) is a good idea.

Donn R. Chatham, MD
Louisville Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Mole removal

I would highly recommend that if you choose to do a procedure to remove the lesion, you should always have it biopsied prior to.

Sam Naficy, MD, FACS
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 221 reviews

Laser not the best solution for a raised brown lesion

First, you want to have a tissue sample to be sure what it was. The laser wont do this. Secondly you should have a surgeon or dermatologist with plenty of experience on the face. There are varying techniques, but most likely a precice scalpel removal with local numbing anesthetic should give the best results. 

Christopher J. Peers, MD
South Bend Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Scalpel Sculpting Is Optimal For Removing Elevated (Bumpy) Moles

Although removing elevated moles by any method from any location is likely to leave a small scar, scalpel sculpting, which involves no deep cutting or stitches has, in my experience, proven quite successful for achieving gratifying aesthetic results while leaving little, or often barely perceptible, scars.
The technique, which I have been using for thirty years, involves "scultping the mole" off from the surrounding skin in a tangential fashion (i.e. not cutting deeply into the skin). Deep cutting will inevitably result in a scar, while superficial (horizontal) removal in this fashion largely avoids this. Elliptical and fusiform simply describe the resulting shape of a wound excision after cutting them out deeply and before the placement of the sutures.
Following scalpel sculpting, the borders of the mole can then be smoothed and blended with the surrounding normal skin by "dermaplaning," a technique by which the edge of the scalpel is used to delicately abrade the skin. Properly done, the entire procedure, performed under local anesthesia, takes no more than three to five minutes.
Perfectly flat moles (beauty marks, birth marks) can be elevated a tad with the local anesthetic and then more easily scalpel sculpted away and shaped to the contour of the surrounding skin.

A board certified aesthetic physician with experience in this area should be the only one to perform this kind of procedure. And the specimen should absolutely be sent to the laboratory to confirm that it is entirely benign, since sometimes innocent-looking moles removed for cosmetic purposes only prove to be atypical . Laser ablation of the mole would simply destroy the mole, risk a visible scar and not provide any specimen for laboratory confirmation., 

Nelson Lee Novick, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Laser removal of lesion

Having this mass lasered by an aesthetician is absolutely not the appropriate treatment.  First, unless there has been a biopsy, you cannot rule out a skin cancer or dysplastic lesion.  Second, you should not assume that a laser doesn't leave a scar, especially in the hands of a non-physician.

Robert L. Kraft, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Laser mole removal by a beautician

No on both counts: not by a beautician and not with a laser. I feel that it is never appropriate to use a laser as your primary treatment for removing a mole. Regardless of how "benign" a mole may appear, a biopsy may still reveal it to be atypical. There are many ways to surgically remove a mole with a minimal scar and have tissue to send for microscopic examination which is the only way to ensure that it was benign. Using a laser to improve the appearance of a mole will alter its look and make it more difficult to observe for precancerous changes in the future. See a dermatologist to have it properly evaluated and removed. You can follow the video link below to learn more about identifying the changes in moles that are suspicious for skin cancer.

Mitchell Schwartz, MD
South Burlington Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Mole removals should be performed by experts

Um, no. You should not have someone called a "beautician" remove this, and absolutely not with a laser. First, beauticians aren't doctors or experienced with moles, what they are, and what is benign vs. malignant. Second, lasers can't remove moles and can leave a large divet in the face. So, no, don't do this, unless you do want to trade it for a scar, and possibly worse. See a doctor.

F. Victor Rueckl, MD
Las Vegas Dermatologist
4.6 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Raised mole removal

Since you mentioned your mole has been there for years, it is most likely benign and not malignant.  If you would like it removed, I would recommend shaving it off.  This should not leave a noticeable scar once it has healed.  

Michael I. Echavez, MD
San Francisco Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 18 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.