Punch Excision of a Mole
Moles that extend deeper than the superficial plane of the skin may require a punch excision to adequately remove the growth and ensure a lesser likelihood of recurrence. A punch excision removes moles by using a cylindrical tool to take out the overly pigmented skin cells.
Punch Excision of a Mole
- avg. recovery
About the Procedure
Larger moles on the face or neck can be considered unsightly for some, however, they can be easily removed by a dermatologist. Once the doctor has determined the mole to be benign, it can be removed in a simple, in office procedure that requires minimal recovery. For moles that are deeper than the skin's surface and smaller than 8mm in diameter, a punch excision can be used to excise the growth. Superficial moles can be removed with an even simpler shave excision and deeper moles will require a more invasive surgical excision. Moles and other pigmented birthmarks can typically be removed in one visit. Vascular birthmarks that present in red or purple tones will require laser or light therapies to remove. Before a punch excision to remove a benign mole procedure, the doctor will cleanse and anesthetize the area with a local numbing agent. Once the area is thoroughly numbed, the doctor will use a skin punch instrument with a circular blade to remove the mole. The punch tool allows for dissection into the subcutaneous fat, helping ensure the growth does not return. After the mole has been removed, the excision site will be closed with sutures and covered with a bandage.
The goal of a punch excision of a mole is to remove benign-appearing moles.
What to Expect
For moles that extend deeper into the layers of the skin, a punch excision may be used to ensure a lesser likelihood of recurrence. Here is a quick guide for what to expect before, during, and after a punch excision of a mole.
- No extensive preparation
- Wear SPF daily and avoid sun exposure
- Area will be cleansed and anesthetized the area with a local numbing agent
- A skin punch instrument with a circular blade will be used to remove the mole
- Once the mole is removed, the excision site will be closed and bandaged
Recovery from a punch excision of a mole typically takes about a week with the appearance of any scar fading within 1-2 months. If non-absorbable sutures are used they will be removed after 1-2 weeks. Avoid direct and artificial sun exposure to ensure optimal scar healing.
The ideal candidate for a punch excision wants to remove a benign appearing mole that is smaller than 8mm.
Not Recommended For
Punch excision of a mole is not recommended for patients with suspicious moles who have not consulted with a dermatologist to determine if the mole is cancerous.
Side effects of a punch excision of a mole are minor and may include a potential scar. Be sure to follow any post-procedure care instructions to avoid any potential side effects such as infection.