SKIN GROWTHS, LUMPS, AND BUMPS
Many patients schedule a visit to us to ask about a variety of growths, lumps, or bumps they have on their skin. The first and most important thing we do is make sure these are benign growths and not skin cancer. If you have a small growth that concerns you, we definitely recommend you schedule a skin exam with us so that we can determine what is potentially dangerous and what is entirely benign. Small growths that become irritated frequently or that bother people cosmetically can often be removed in the office with minimal scarring.
Types of skin growths:
- Keratoses: These are some of the most common growths that we see. A keratosis is an excess growth of keratinocytes (skin cells) that results in a raised, rough lesion on the skin. The two main types of keratoses are actinic keratoses and seborrheic keratoses.
- Skin tags: Skin tags are small, soft growths that protrude from the skin and often appear as if they are hanging from the skin. They are benign and can be removed easily.
- Milia: These are tiny pearl-like bumps of keratin underneath the surface of the skin. Milia are also benign and can be easily removed in the office without leaving a scar.
- Enlarged oil glands: Sebaceous hyperplasia, commonly known as enlarged oil glands, appear on the skin as the skin matures. They appear as smooth, yellow, waxy bumps on the cheeks and foreheads.
- Cysts: Cysts are non-cancerous bumps underneath the surface of the skin that are made up of skin and oil within a sac-like structure.