Treatment options for removal of skin lesions

Skin lesions are growths, changes in colour or shape on the skin. They can be either benign skin lesions (harmless) or potentially dangerous, so called malignant skin lesions, most commonly referred to as skin cancer.

Based on the above information, a skin lesion may either be a medical concern or a cosmetic issue. Therefore, before you decide to do something about your lesions or in cases of doubt, a dermatologist should be consulted.

Harmless skin lesions that are cosmetically disturbing can be treated in many different ways. On this page you will learn more about your options and what results you can expect.

What type of skin lesion do I have?

There are a wide variety of benign skin lesions. To know what kind of treatment is suitable for you to tone down or to get rid of your skin lesions differ depending on what type of lesion you have.

Moles, age spots and liver spots – the most common skin lesion

The most common skin lesions are birthmarks, moles and age spots. These skin lesions are smooth, raised or flat and are caused by a concentration of pigmented cells.

Birthmarks, moles and age spots can be treated in many ways, but they should always be examined by a doctor. Read more on our page about birthmarks, moles and age spots.

Seborrhoeic keratoses – can also look like moles

Seborrhoeic keratoses are also known as brown or seborrheic warts. They can look like moles but are completely harmless, warty looking and a little rough skin growth that become more common with aging.

Seborrhoeic keratoses can be removed in several ways; you can read more on our information page on how to remove brown warts.

The soft Fibroma – warty looking growths or skin tags

The soft fibroma is a little harmless soft tissue tumor. The shape of it can be the same as a pea, mushroom, tag or something in between. Skin tags most commonly occur from the age of 30 and grow preferably on the neck or face. They are usually skin-colored, but can also be pigmented.

There are several different methods on how to remove skin tags. You can read more about it on our page about how to remove skin tags.

Lentigo – pigmented spots that can look like brown flat patches

Lentigo also known as liver spots, sun spots or solar lentigo are small brown patches of pigmented skin located on the face or body.

Liver spots occurs between the ages of 20-30 and can be brought on by sun exposure. Since lentigo is located very superficially on the skin, it can be treated with successful results. Read more on our page about treatments for lentigo.

Freckles – pigmented spots that can often be confused with lentigo

Freckles are small reddish pigmented spots on the skin caused by genetics or brought on by sun exposure.

Freckles are just like lentigo, a superficial epidermal pigmentation change and can therefore be treated. Read more on our page on removing freckles.

Hemangioma – flat or raised tumor with blood vessels

A hemangioma is a small harmless tumor made up of blood vessels which usually appears as flat red spots or purplish bluish thick, raised lesions on the skin. They are harmless and common in children but can also occur in adults.

Hemangiomas that aren’t growing anymore can be treated with laser. You can read more about various treatment options on our page about hemangioma.

Histiocytoma – flat or raised brown pinkish skin lumps

Histiocytoma or dermatofibroma are small, firm, slighly raised or flat lumps on the skin surface. They often appear in brown or pink colour and are completely harmless. Histiocytoma are often located on body parts where you have had insect bites or other minor skin damage.

Histiocytoma can be treated after being examined by a doctor; the skin lesion can be removed with a scalpel. However, before deciding to remove a histiocytoma it is important to be aware of the risks of scarring.

Actinic keratoses – blushing rough patches on the skin surface

Actinic keratoses also known as solar keratosis are sun damage located on the skin’s outermost layer, so called epidermis layer. Actinic keratoses resemble a pink redish rash and patches of scaly, rough skin.

Actinic keratoses are mostly common in fair-skinned people, and occur naturally on sun exposed areas such as the face, scalp, and chest and back of the hand.

There are various and effective ways on treating actinic keratoses. Read more on our information page about actinic keratoses.

Melasma – patches of hyperpigmentation on the face

Melasma also known as chloasma is a harmless gray-brown pigmentation or skin discoloration located on the face.

Melasma are patches that are often found on cheekbones, chin, upper lip, forehead and nose and becomes more apparent after sun exposure.

It can be treated depending on how deep the pigmentation is located. Melasma is usually treated with bleaching products such as Hydroquinone. Read more on our information page about melasma.

Other skin lesions that can sometimes be treated within the health care

The information above is primarily focused on treatment options for skin lesions where there are cosmetic or medical reasons to treat skin lesions successfully.

Treatments for cosmetic reasons are not funded by the NHS.  However, there are numerous of other skin changes that are considered as medical care and treatments are offered within the health care. These include:

  • Warts – are treated in some cases, but most often recommended with home remedies
  • Fat lumps under the skin – so called lipoma is only treated for medical reasons within health care
  • Atheroma – is treated if there are medical reasons but is often removed because of cosmetic reasons
  • Keratoacanthoma – a fast-growing elevated skin lesion that should be excised and sent for examination to exclude squamous cell carcinoma
  • Xanthelasma – a harmless yellow discoloration of the eyelid skin which isn’t treated within the health care

If you feel unsure about your skin lesions, we recommend you to first consult with your family doctor or a dermatologist for diagnosis.

The above information provides an overview of common skin changes with different treatment options. The information has been examined by Dr. Tore Nilsen from Vaxsjo Medical Center AB in Sweden.

This context should be considered as general information only and cannot replace a medical consultation.

Additional options for skin lesions

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