Is It True That Removing my Mole on my Breast Will Scar Like a Cigarette Burn? (photo)

My dermatologist suggests not removing my mole because he insists the scar will look terribly and will look like a cigarette burn .He couldn't show me any before and after images and after searching online I didn't find any either . The mole is not changing colors or anything but it is very prominent and it bothers me when I wear swimwear . Is there no way to obtain a smooth scar? He said he would have to "scoop" . It's disappointing , help!

Doctor Answers 6

Mole removal

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An option would be to have the mole completely surgically excised.  I would recommend that you see a plastic surgeon or a dermatologic surgeon for an evaluation and possible treatment.

Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 231 reviews

Large dark raised moles tend to be best excised

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I would recommend have a large dark raised mole excised since if you only shaved it flat, then you would have a large dark age spot or if you went deeper with the shave it would look like a chicken pox  scar or cigarette burn. It is done easily and quickly under local with a multi-layer closure for roughly $350-500 and give the best cosmetic result. Sincerely,

David Hansen,MD

David Hansen, MD
Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Scar after mole removal

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As a plastic surgeon I'm more inclined to excise this which would leave a longer but thin scar on your breast.  In my opinion, this is often better than the "cigarette burn" hypopigmented scars that result from shaving it off.  That said, you look like you have very lightly pigmented skin so either option would probably be acceptable and cosmetically better than what you have now.  Have it evaluated by a plastic surgeon, dermatologic surgeon or cosmetic dermatologist that is comfortable doing minor surgery procedures.

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Another option for mole removal

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As a Dermatologic surgeon, I remove moles exactly like yours daily.  The raised part is easily removed by shaving it even with the skin, but the darkness I can see around the edges which is not raised would likely leave you residual pigmentation.  This would most likely still look better than the mole, but you also have another option.  That is excision of the mole.  You would be trading the mole for a line scar about 2X the size of the mole, but because of where it is located on your breast, the resulting line scar should be very thin and hardly noticable.  It would have to go through the normal healing period, but may be your best bet.  If unsure, you could shave it off and always have the option of excision if the scar from the shave displeases you, I think either way, in the right hands, your scar would look better than the mole currently does.

Lee P. Laris, DO
Phoenix Dermatologist
4.8 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Shave removal of Mole on chest

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There will be a scar where a mole is removed; there is no getting around it. But seeing the mole and thinking of what the scar could look like, I do believe that a shave removal could be more aesthetically pleasing. There are ways to decrease scarring including keeping the wound moist, using silicone sheeting on the site for a month or two afterwards at night, and/or using a laser to decrease redness. It could take 6-12 months to have the scar turn back, or close to, skin color. If pigmentation returns and the pathology at this site showed it was a normal, or inflamed, mole, I often freeze the site lightly to decrease any returning pigmentation, but this is more for aesthetic purposes. Good luck.

David J. Myers, MD
Salt Lake City Dermatologic Surgeon

Mole removal on chest

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Moles can tend to scar more on the chest and back but that's the nature of that area of the body. Proper postcare should alleviate your scarring and it shouldn't be overly significant. I might suggest you find another dermatologist for an evaluation just for a second opinion. I would think a shave removal, followed by good postcare, and maybe a few IPL or laser flashes to the site should leave you with something absolutely tolerable and much better than what you have now. Try to find a dermatologic surgeon - not all dermatologists are created equal. 

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.