At Hollywood Dermatology and Cosmetic Specialists believe in providing patients the services they need to stay healthy. This includes providing services including skin cancer screenings. During these screenings, South Florida area patients might experience a specific process known as mole mapping.
What is mole mapping?
The mole mapping process involves steps in monitoring moles on the skin that might progress into cancerous lesions. While moles on the body are normal, changes in them are not and may be indicative of skin cancer. With mole mapping, a dermatologist can evaluate the mole, track changes in the moles, and diagnose skin cancer in the earlier stages whenever possible.
Who might benefit from mole mapping?
Mole mapping is a process that is often recommended for patients who are at a higher risk of developing melanoma. This includes patients with:
- More than 50 moles on the body
- Fair skin/light eyes
- Severe sunburn history
- A history of melanoma, themselves or in their family
- Moles larger than the size of a nickel
- Weakened immune systems
What should I expect during mole mapping?
At a patient’s first skin cancer screening, digital photographs are taken of moles on the body, These photographs are then stored on our computer database. During the next annual skin cancer screening, the doctor will retrieve and review these photographs of moles on the body and compare them with the appearance of the moles during the current visit. If there is any change in the size, shape, color, or border of the mole between appointments, a biopsy is performed, during which a small portion of the mole is removed and sent off to a laboratory to look for cancerous skin cells. If found, treatment options are discussed with the patient.
Schedule your skin cancer screening and assessment today
Everyone is encouraged to visit a dermatologist once a year for an annual skin cancer screening. If you are overdue and live in the area of South Florida, you can contact the team at Hollywood Dermatology and Cosmetic Specialists to discuss the benefits of skin cancer screenings and mole mapping to monitor for the early signs of trouble. Call (954) 961-1200 to request an appointment with our doctors at one of our seven office locations.