Mole, cyst and lipoma removal
Mole and cysts are extremely common and can be removed from your skin either if they are benign and bothering you or if there is concern that they are cancerous.
What is mole removal?
Mole removal is a straightforward procedure which aims to remove coloured spots or raised skin coloured areas from your skin. The exact technique for removal will depend on whether your mole is suspected to be cancerous or if it is benign.
Moles can be removed for the following reasons:
Your dermatologist thinks a mole could be cancerous - features that indicate suspicious changes in a mole include:
- Increased in size
- Change in shape
- Irregular colour
- Change in colour or become patchy
- Over 6mm in size
- Becomes inflamed, bleeds, oozes or does not heal
- Moles removed that are suspicious of cancer will be sent for examination and analysis under a microscope.
- You have a benign (non-cancerous) yet bothersome mole
Most moles are not cancerous and are simply an overgrowth or accumulation of your skin cells. Although harmless, these moles may be bothersome and affect your self-confidence. Examples include if the moles are:
- On your face or other parts of your body where they can be seen
- In a position where they are prone to bleeding or catching on clothing or a when brushing your hair.
- Large, dark or hairy.
You may choose for cosmetic reasons to have a mole removed. Cosmetic mole removal can be arranged privately at West Valley Hospital as this service may be restricted on the NHS.
What does a mole removal treatment involve?
Small moles can usually be removed under local anaesthetic as a day case procedure. We aim to remove the mole the same day as the consultation where possible. .
Treatment to remove your mole will vary depending on the type of mole you have, its size and location. Your surgeon will advise you of the most suitable procedure for you.
What treatment is available for a mole suspected to be cancerous?
Mole excision biopsy surgery is usually performed for moles that have suspicious features or that are not suitable for shave excision. Your mole is removed with some normal tissue around it using a scalpel. It is then sent for analysis and is assessed under a microscope. Your wound will need to be closed up with stitches afterwards. If any cancerous cells are found, your surgeon will advise you if any further surgery or treatment is required.
What treatment is available for the removal of benign moles?
- Shave mole removal – used only for harmless moles that protrude from the surface of your skin. Using a surgical blade, your surgeon will ‘shave off’ the mole to be level with the adjacent skin. It only takes a few minutes to perform and the wound will heal without any stitches usually within 7 to 14 days. Side effects include, permanent scarring, poor or indented scarring, infection, recurrence of mole.
- Mole excision surgery – used for moles that are not suitable for shave excision and involves removing your mole using a scalpel and then closing the wound with stitches. Side effects include, permanent straight line scar, poor scarring, infection, poor healing, recurrence of mole.
- Cryotherapy or freezing – used either for small multiple moles and warts or if you wish to have a non-invasive technique. The mole is frozen with liquid nitrogen. Multiple treatments 4 to 6 weeks apart may be needed for a response. Side effects include redness, swelling, itching, blistering, oozing, infection, scarring, poor scarring, development of a pale area, lack of response to treatment.
What is cyst removal?
Cysts are fluid-filled swellings located just under your skin and can appear anywhere on your body. Cysts can be removed as a simple procedure under local anaesthetic as a day case procedure. We will aim to remove your cyst the same day as your consultation.
Infected cysts are drained (and not removed) to release the infected fluid contents and reduce the infection and relieve symptoms of pain, redness and swelling.
How long does it take to recover from a mole, cyst or lipoma removal?
In most cases, we will aim to remove your mole or cyst the same day as your consultation and you will be able to go home after the procedure.
If you have had mole or cyst excision surgery you will be able to return to work the day after your procedure unless your work puts a strain on the area stitched. You should avoid getting your wound wet for the first few days.
The healing process following your mole or cyst removal can take between two to four weeks as your skin regenerates over the wound. After 2 weeks, there should no longer be any dressings and you should start to apply moisturiser to the wound.
What is the cost of a mole, cyst or lipoma removal?
The cost of a mole or cyst removal will depend on the type of mole or cyst you have and the technique used to remove it.
Mole excision biopsy surgery is from £600.00 per mole.
Shave mole removal for benign moles is from £500.00 per mole.
Cyst drainage is from £600.00 per cyst.
Infected cyst drainage is from £450.00 per cyst.
Lipoma removal if from £600.00 per lipoma.
We have self-funding options to suit your finances including our All-inclusive Total Care packages, pay as you go, and interest free finance medical loans.
Your private medical insurance may cover the cost of your mole removal if your doctor thinks it is suspicious. They will not cover benign mole or cyst removal for cosmetic reasons. We advise that you obtain written confirmation from your insurance provider that they will cover your skin growth removal before you start treatment.
Mole Removal with West Valley Hospital
The plastic surgeons at West Valley Hospital can quickly and simply remove cysts and moles for medical or cosmetic reasons or where there is suspicion of cancer. We understand that our patients might want treatment of their cysts and moles for cosmetic reasons and we can provide this service which is being restricted on the NHS.