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Skin, Hair & Nails Guide

Rosa Cabrera RN

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ask: Mole removal

By Anonymous
 
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What's involved in getting a mole removed? Is it painful and covered by insurance?

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EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

I'm sixteen and have a wide mole on the bottom of my chin. I want to get it removed, but I'm worried about scarring. Will it be more noticeable than the brown lump on my chin?

June 19, 2014 - 8:35am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

I just had a mole removed from my scalp from a plastic surgeon, and had 4 stitches to close it. My mole was rather large and he took the mole and then some due to the color of the mole, and because the mole was set down very deep into my skin.

It is not painful during the procedure at all, you may feel a tug or a warm or cool sensation, but overall it is painless. Even on your head, you cannot tell what they are doing.

However the numbing agent made me act funny. After it wore off, my head was VERY painful! Maybe due to the size of the wound itself, or perhaps it is just swollen and tight feeling. I had plans to do errands tonight, but I am too ill-feeling to do any activity at all.

May 26, 2009 - 8:00pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

My daughter is getting ready to have surgery for a atypical mole on her scalp. She is 6. Did yours leave a big scar and alot of hair loss? Are you able to cover the area with your hair so you can't see it? Her mole is about the size of a pencil eraser but they will take more to make sure they get it.

December 24, 2009 - 8:02am
Diane Porter (reply to Anonymous)

Anon,

Where exactly on her scalp is your daughter's mole? And what does her doctor say about removal? Do they plan to go deeper than the mole, or wider?

If you can let us know a little more, we can submit your question to one of the experts on our Medical Advisory Board for a professional opinion.

December 28, 2009 - 8:07am
alysiak (reply to Anonymous)

Thank you for sharing your experience.

It's not unusual to feel a little "funny" after local anesthesia wears off. Your body does start feeling the pain! Rest and take good care of yourself.

May 26, 2009 - 8:09pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

I agree with what everyone else said, it is a pretty simple procedure. I had a mole on my upper chest that everyone would slap since they thought it was a bug while I was growing up. I had it removed and it was fairly simple. They simply apply a sedative in the area, used a cutter to remove it and that was it. The procedure was approximately 5 minutes. There was no pain although they ask you to stay out of the sun for a while. Very simple and painless.

March 14, 2009 - 8:13am
Shannon Koehle

Hi Anon-

I've had two moles removed and the process depends on where, and how big your moles are that need to be removed.

The first mole I had removed when I was 16. It was in the middle of my back and rather large. My dermatologist called a plastic surgeon in and it was removed one sunny afternoon in the spring. The plastic surgeon numbed the area with needles, removed the mole, and stitched it up. Some of the deep stitches dissolved. The superficial ones were removed about two weeks later.

The second mole removed was removed the same day by the dermatologist. It was numbed and cut off. No stitches were needed.

In both cases, I received an antibiotic and Aetna health insurance covered the procedures. My mom just paid the co-pay.

One came back negative for skin cancer, the other sample was lost, but they felt confident about the margins even though it was likely pre-cancerous.

Let us know how your procedure goes and good luck!

March 13, 2009 - 2:59pm
Kristin Davis

I've had several suspicious looking moles removed over the years just because there's a high prevalence of skin cancer in my family. They were removed various ways -- by being frozen off and by being cut off. Neither way was painful because that area was numbed beforehand, and they all healed up just fine.

One thing to keep in mind, like Susan mentioned, is to make sure you follow your doctor's instructions for caring for your wound after the mole removal. And certain places on your body may take more time to heal. I once had a mole removed from my foot and it seemed like it took forever to heal. My daughter had a mole about the size of a pencil eraser removed from her scalp, and that was also a challenge to heal because of the location.

When are you getting your mole removed? Have you asked your doctor to check if your insurance covers it for you? Let us know how it goes!

March 13, 2009 - 1:08pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Kristin Davis)

Hi Kristin,

When your daughter had her mole removed from her scalp, did her hair grow right back? I might have to do the same, but don't want a little bald spot! Thanks!!

April 26, 2011 - 8:35pm
Susan Cody HERWriter Guide

Hi Anon

Thanks for your question.

Mole removal is a fairly simple process that can take place in a clinic or even a doctor's office, depending on the process. It is usually an outpatient procedure.

It can be cut off and then cauterized to stop bleeding, or a few stitches can be administered. Sometimes the mole will be filled with fluid in order to make it easier to remove. A local anesthetic will be administered - the patient will not feel pain.

You will be sent home with an antibiotic cream on the area where the wound is and it will be bandaged. You need to make sure that the entire area is kept clean to prevent infection, and apply more antibiotic cream, as per your doctor's orders.

If you had stitches, you will go back to your doctor to get them removed (if they are not the dissolving ones) within about two weeks of the procedure.

If the mole is suspect, it'll be checked for any cancerous qualities by a lab and you'll get the results back via the doctor's office.

There isn't much pain afterward - the issue of most concern is keeping the wound clean so it can heal properly.

Excess bleeding, other discharge, a bad smell from the wound or a fever should be reported straight away. You'll be given an instruction sheet when you leave the clinic after the procedure.

As to if insurance covers it - it depends on your insurance plan. If it is being removed for cosmetic reasons, it may not be covered. If it is being removed for medical or preventative reasons, it may be more likely to be covered. Your insurance handbook should let you know or you can call the phone number on the back of your insurance card.

Good luck!

March 13, 2009 - 11:50am
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