What are skin tags and moles?

Skin tag facts

A skin tag is a small flap of tissue that hangs off the skin by a connecting stalk. Skin tags are not dangerous. They are usually found on the neck, chest, back, armpits, under the breasts, or in the groin area. Skin tags most often appear in women, especially with weight gain, and in elderly people.

Epidermal mole

An epidermal nevus (plural: nevi) is an abnormal, noncancerous (benign) patch of skin caused by an overgrowth of cells in the outermost layer of skin (Epidermis). Epidermal nevi are typically seen at birth or develop in early childhood. Affected individuals have one or more nevi that vary in size.

One group of epidermal nevi, called keratinocytic or nonorganoid epidermal nevi, includes nevi that involve only keratinocytes. Keratinocytic epidermal nevi are typically found on the torso or limbs. They can be flat, tan or brown patches of skin or raised, velvety patches. As affected individuals age, the nevi can become thicker and darker and develop a wart-like (verrucous) appearance.

Mutations in the genes mentioned above lead to proteins that are constantly turned on. Studies suggest that cells with a mutation in one of these genes grow and divide more than normal cells. This uncontrolled cell division results in overgrowth of skin cells, leading to epidermal nevi.

Mutations associated with an epidermal nevus are present only in the cells of the nevus, not in the normal skin cells surrounding it. Because the mutation is found in some of the body's cells but not in others, people with an epidermal nevus are said to be mosaic for the mutation.

Skin mole

Moles are a common type of skin growth. They often appear as small, dark brown spots and are caused by clusters of pigmented cells. Moles generally appear during childhood and adolescence. Most people have 10 to 40 moles, some of which may change in appearance or fade away over time.

Fibroma

A fibroma is a benign, tumor-like growth made up mostly of fibrous or connective tissue. Tumor-like growths such as fibroma develop when uncontrolled cell growth occurs for an unknown reason, or as a result of injury or local irritation.

Age wart

They are benign growths due to a build up of ordinary skin cells. They are strongly age-related. They usually start to appear after the age of 40 years, and most old people will have at least a few seborrhoeic warts, but some will have large numbers. They are not infectious and do not become malignant.


Always check with your MD first!