Moles and other birthmarks are benign, pigmented spots or patches of skin that range in color. They can be tan, brown, and black (moles) or red, pink, or purple (vascular lesions, such as strawberry hemangiomas or port wine stains). Though most moles and birthmarks are not dangerous, they can sometimes develop into cancer. Many patients also choose to have benign moles removed for aesthetic reasons. At Pacific Skin and Cosmetic Dermatology San Francisco, we offer routine mole checks performed by board-certified dermatologist Tracy Evans, as well as by dermatological physician's assistants. A mole is a growth on the skin that results from a cluster of pigmented cells, and they are quite common. Virtually everyone has at least one mole. During mole checks, we examine, measure, and document the size, shape, and growth of moles on the body. This allows us to evaluate any risk and monitor any changes. If you have noticed a new or unusual mole or any changes in an existing mole, it is very important to have it examined by a dermatologist.
"I recently moved to the area and was searching for a new dermatologist for my annual skin checks. Luckily I came across Precision dermatology. First of all, the check-in process was so easy and efficient. Instead of having me fill out tons of paperwork, they had me fill everything out on an ipad and it was as simple as clicking boxes. In no time I was seen by Krystal the PA. Let me tell you that I have never had a more thorough skin check. She checked me from head to toe (even between my toes). She also took pictures and measurements of the moles she wanted to keep an eye on. At the end of the visit she made recommendations on skin care products and laser treatments based on my specific skin type and concerns. She was very informative but never pushy. I highly recommend Krystal and the staff at Precision Dermatology!"- N.P. / Yelp / Dec 04, 2018
"This is my first ever review of any kind. I brought my son to see Dr. Bramlette and was so impressed with how she treated us that I made an appointment for myself - which resulted in Dr. Bramlette finding and removing melanoma. I'm jumping ahead here. Dr. Bramlette was very thorough and patient as she explained the atypical moles and birthmarks my son has and was very explicit telling both my son and me what we should be looking for with regard to changes over time. She was so great with us that I decided to make my skin check up with her. When I came in she looked over my entire freckled body - from head to between my toes. She immediately spotted a freckle that she was very concerned with. I brushed it off and said that Ive always had it. She asked me if I was absolutely positive that I've always had it and that it's always looked the way it looked right then. I wavered. She biopsied. It was melanoma. She removed it successfully, professionally, empathetically. She gave me her cell phone number in case I had questions. I had been to 3 other dermatologists over the years who had missed it. I will never go anywhere else."- M.C. / Yelp / Apr 24, 2013
"Monday, May 20th My first visit to Dr. Tracy Evans office. Where do I begin, the ladies at the front desk was super nice , professional and very friendly. The office is very nice and clean. Ms. Haydee Ramirez and Ms. Danielle Davaros, Advanced Practice Clinician . They both were super nice, polite, very professional and they address all of my concerns and questions. This was my second time visiting an dermatologist office and by no means I receive the superb service that I received today from Dr. Evans office. First, Ms. Ramirez, assisted me with my online registration form. Mrs. Ramirez, prepared me for my examination that was provided by Ms. Davaros. I have multiple moles on my body. Mrs. Davaros examine me from head to toe and she explained everything to me step by step and how she address my concerns. I felt so relieved and happy. I felt Dr. Evans staff took very good care of me and I will highly recommend this office to my family and friends. I'm so happy and looking forward toward my next visit. Thanks so much everyone."- E.C. / Yelp / May 20, 2019
Moles occur when certain skin cells, called melanocytes, grow in a clump instead of being distributed evenly under the skin. These clumps cause the dark-colored spots and bumps called moles because melanocytes are what produce your skin's melanin (pigment). Moles may appear or darken at any time but are most common after exposure to the sun, during the teen years, and during pregnancy.
Moles (also called nevi) that exhibit any of the following warning signs should be examined by a dermatologist immediately:
- Diameter larger than six millimeters
- Itching or bleeding
- Any changes in color, size, or shape
- Has multiple colors
- Asymmetrical shape
- Irregular or scalloped borders
Dr. Evans recommends that patients get mole checks on a regular basis, especially for moles located where they can't be easily monitored, such as on the scalp.
Most moles don't warrant treatment unless they become suspicious, cancerous, or if they cause discomfort or cosmetic issues. In these situations, Dr. Evans may need to remove the mole(s). There are several different methods for removing moles, depending on their depth, location, and color, as well as the patient's skin type, age, and other factors. Removal procedures can include surgical excision, surgical "shaving," laser removal, pulsed light therapy, and microdermabrasion.
Most of these procedures can be done in less than an hour under local anesthesia and have successful, aesthetically pleasing results. We usually ask our patients to return to our San Francisco, CA location for at least one follow-up visit so we can monitor the area and your healing progress. Your treatment area should be completely healed in about two weeks; however, this can vary a bit, depending on the removal method. You'll be given simple but important after-care instructions to follow in order to help the wound heal nicely.
Schedule Your Mole Check!
Even when moles are not a medical problem, it is very common for men and women of all ages to wish to have them removed. They can cause self-consciousness or discomfort under clothing. However, if you are concerned about your mole(s), having a dermatologist examine your skin can save you undue worry or catch a problem early. Learn more about mole and lesion removal at Pacific Skin and Cosmetic Dermatology San Francisco to eliminate unwanted skin growths from your face and body.