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Skin Tags

Skin Tag Treatment

Skin Growth Treatment & Skin Tag Removal in the San Diego Area

Skin Tag Removal should be done by your dermatologist. Dr. Melanie Palm is a nationally recognized dermatologist and an expert in the treatment of unwanted skin tags and skin growths. Her offices are located in Solana Beach, CA just north of San Diego. Dr. Palm is a noted leader in her field and offers many effective treatment options for skin growths including skin tags.

What are Skin Tags?

Skin tags are common skin growths that appear commonly in areas of skin folds or creases such as the eyelids, neck, underarm, and groin. They are also known as acrochordons, and large skin tags are referred to as fibroepithelial polyps. They are considered benign meaning they do not transform into skin cancer. They are usually skin-colored and have a fleshy stalk referred to as a peduncle, although they may appear as pink or brown in color. When traumatized, they often bleed because of a central blood vessel that runs through the middle of the skin growth. When irritated by rubbing or jewelry, they may become crusted or painful.

What Causes Skin Tags?

Skin tags are extremely common affecting almost 50% of the population and may have no particular cause. However, skin friction areas (called flexural regions) where skin meets skin, may promote skin stimulation that results in the development of skin tags over time.

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Conditions that may be correlated with the development of skin tags include the following:

  • Obesity or increased leptin levels
  • Diabetes mellitus or elevated insulin levels or glucose levels
  • Pregnancy
  • Acanthosis nigricans
  • Acromegaly (excess growth hormone condition)
  • Birt-Hogg-Dubay syndrome
  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome

Why Should Skin Tags Be Evaluated by a Dermatologist?

When traumatized, skin tags may bleed profusely and cause anxiety or discomfort in the person affected by these skin growths. Although some may select to treat skin tags at home by tying them with a string or cutting them off, they may become infected or experience prolonged bleeding if treated at home.

Rarely, more serious skin conditions may mimic the appearance of a skin tag. Professional evaluation by a board-certified dermatologist can distinguish a skin tag from a skin cancer such as basal cell carcinoma or melanoma. If a lesion is suspicious, it may be biopsied and submitted for pathologic evaluation by a dermatopathologist.

Skin Tag Removal & Treatment Options

Skin tags can be painlessly removed in the dermatology clinic. Dr. Palm is able to properly evaluate a skin growth to ensure it is benign, and if appropriate remove it. Dr. Palm cares greatly about the comfort of her patients. For that reason, she offers topical and regional numbing prior to skin tag removal to ensure complete patient comfort and during the procedure.

Skin tags may be removed through a variety of means. Skin tag removal should only be performed after a sterile preparation of the skin. Snip excision, scissor removal, hyfercation, liquid nitrogen freezing (referred to as cryosurgery) or surgery.

Little to no downtime is associated with skin tag removal. Bandaids may be placed in the area of removal, and a small scab may be present in the area of removal for several days before the skin completely heals. Treated skin tags do not recur but an individual predisposed to skin tag formation may develop more in the future.

If you are looking for a dermatologist to treat your skin tag removal in the San Diego area, call Dr. Melanie Palm at 858.792.SKIN (7546) to schedule your appointment.