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Mole (skin marking)

From Academic Kids

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A mole or melanocytic naevus is a small, darkly pigmented growth on the skin, formed mostly of melanocytes. The high concentration of melanin is responsible for their dark color. They are a member of the family of skin lesions known as naevi.

Moles may either be present at birth or develop later in life. Acquired moles are a form of benign neoplasm, while congenital moles are considered a minor malformation, or hamartoma. Moles are most often of no medical consequence, but may occasionaly be removed for cosmetic or other reasons.

Moles are usually circular or oval and not very large. Most children are born with moles, and almost everyone has at least one or two moles on their bodies, some more than others.

Sudden and unexpected changes in skin moles (e.g. bleeding, irritation, darkening, sudden growth) can be a sign of skin cancer so they need to be watched carefully. If a mole appears suspicious, it can be biopsied and checked for signs of malignancy.

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