Removing Benign Skin Lesions (Moles, Skin Tags, Cysts)

By Elena Prousskaia MD, FRCS (Plast), FEBOPRAS

This page will provide you with information about the removal of benign skin lesions.

What is a skin lesion?

Essentially, they are small lumps located on, or just beneath, your skin. Skin tags, lipomata, moles and epidermoid cysts are all examples of skin lesions.

Benign skin lesion is an umbrella term for a range of lumps and bumps including moles, cysts, keratoses, skin tags, calluses, corns and warts.

Skin lesions are found on or just below the skin. Examples of skin lesions are epidermoid cysts, lipomata (benign tumour of fatty tissue), skin tags and moles.

Benign (non cancerous) lesions can simply be left alone. Benign skin lesions are usually harmless and do not need to be removed. However, you may be advised to have a skin lesion removed if it interferes with your everyday life or it becomes cancerous. You may also decide to have a skin lesion removed because you do not like the way that it looks.

What happens during excision of skin lesions?

Skin lesions are usually removed under local anaesthetic. After careful examination the area around the lesion will be cleaned with anti-bacterial solution to limit infection. There may be a surgical drape placed around the area to ensure a sterile working area.

The lesion(s) will be placed in specimen jar(s) and sent to a lab for analysis. Your wound will be closed with stitches and cover it with a dressing.

The procedure will usually take around 30-45 minutes.

The area treated may be red and raised for a while. If you have had stitches we will advise you when to come back in to have them removed. Dissolvable stitches will usually disappear between 10 to 14 days after surgery. Pain is usually minimal and can be managed with over-the-counter pain relief.

Depending on the sort of lesion you have had removed and where it is on your body, you may be advised to avoid stretching the skin in the area where surgery has taken place while you still have stitches.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are The Likely Complications ?

Scarring should be minimal and should fade significantly after three months. Temporary side effects may include swelling, bruising and some pain. Complications are rare but may include: Bleeding
Pain
Unsightly scarring
Infection at the site of surgery (wound)
Nerve damage
An epidermoid cyst or a lipoma can return
A larger operation may be required
Wound breakdown (skin fails to heal)

What Is The Recovery Period ?

Shortly after the operation, you should be able to return home, and you should be able to go back to work the very next day, as long as you work does not put a strain on your stitches. However, it is unlikely that these procedures will stop you from carrying out your daily activities.

Can This Be carried Out Under Local Anaesthetic ?

Yes normally this procedure is carried out in an outpatient clinic under a local anaesthetic.

Is Removal Of Benign Skin Lesions Painful ?

Pain is usually minimal and can be managed with over-the-counter pain relief. Depending on the sort of lesion you have had removed and where it is on your body,you will be advised to avoid stretching the skin in the area where surgery has taken place while you still have stitches.

Treatment Cost

The total cost of the surgery will be confirmed after the first consultation.

The cost includes the hospital, surgeon and anaesthetic fees. It also covers all post-operative visits. The initial consultation fee will be invoiced separately. The prices apply only at the time of publication and are subject to changes without notification.

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Initial Consultation...

£150

Surgery Costs From...

£460+

Finance Your Treatment

Treatment At A Glance

Surgical Time TBC
Hospital Stay 0 days
Initial Recovery Time 1 - 2 weeks
Anaesthetic Local or general
Final Result 1 - 3 months
Follow Up 1, 4, 12 weeks, 12 months

Treatment Videos

As a useful resource please view these videos to help educate and explain this procedure in detail.

Treatment Downloads

Download more resources specific to this procedure.

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Skin Self Exam

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Scars & Keloids Information

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