Benign Skin Growth Treatments

Many benign skin growths are not harmful to your health, so they only require treatment for cosmetic reasons. Others are removed proactively because they have a tendency to develop into skin cancer. Lipomas may be removed if they are pressing on a nerve or organ or are interfering with movement.

Removal procedures may include:

  • Cryosurgery: This method is for growths that are very small and near the skin’s surface. Your physician uses a device that sprays liquid nitrogen onto the tumor to freeze cells and destroy them.
  • Shave excision: You are given a local anesthetic before your physician uses a small blade to shave off the growth.
  • Simple excision: Your physician uses a scalpel to remove the growth from the skin. Some of the healthy tissue around it is also removed if skin cancer is suspected.
  • Curettage and electrodessication: This procedure removes tissue and cauterizes the area using a sharp, spoon-shaped instrument called a curette. After curettage, your physician passes an electric needle over the surface of the scraped area to stop any bleeding.
  • Laser treatment: Laser therapy uses a narrow beam of intense light to remove small growths.
  • Dermabrasion: Dermabrasion removes the top layer of skin with a rotating wheel or small particles that rub away skin cells.


Related Resources

American Academy of Dermatology*

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