Birthmarks

Birthmarks are abnormal skin discolorations in spots that are either present at birth or appear shortly thereafter. They can be flat or slightly raised from the skin. They can be any number of colors, including red, brown, black, tan, pink, white or purple. Birthmarks are generally harmless. There are two major categories of birthmarks: pigmented birthmarks and red birthmarks.

Pigmented Birthmarks can grow anywhere on the skin and at any time. They are usually black, brown or skin-colored and appear singly or in groups. They can be moles (congenital nevi) that are present at birth, Mongolian spots, which look like bluish bruises and appear more frequently on people with dark skin, or café-au-lait spots that are flat, light brown or tan and roughly form an oval shape.

Red Birthmarks (also known as macular stains) develop before or shortly after birth and are related to the vascular (blood vessel) system. There are a number of different types:

  • Angel kisses, which usually appear on the forehead and eyelids.
  • Stork bites, which appear on the back of the neck, between the eyebrows on the forehead, or on eyelids of newborns. They may fade away as the child grows, but often persist into adulthood.
  • Port-wine stains, which are flat deep-red or purple birthmarks made up of dilated blood capillaries (small blood vessels). They often appear on the face and are permanent.
  • Strawberry hemangiomas, composed of small, closely packed blood vessels that grow rapidly and can appear anywhere on the body. They usually disappear by age nine.
  • Cavernous hemangiomas are similar to strawberry hemangiomas but go more deeply into the layers of the skin. These can often be characterized by a bluish-purple color. They also tend to disappear naturally around school age.

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Birthmarks
...They can be moles (congenital nevi) that are present at birth, Mongolian spots, which look like bluish bruises and appear more frequently on people with dark skin, or café-au-lait spots that are flat, light brown or tan and roughly form an oval shape...

Protecting Your Skin from Sun Damage
...Aside from skin tone, factors that may increase your risk for sun damage and skin cancer include: Previously treated for cancer Family history of skin cancer Several moles Freckles Typically burn before tanning Blond, red or light brown hair If you detect unusual moles, spots or changes in your skin, or if your skin easily bleeds, make an appointment with our practice...

Skin Cancer Treatment
...Get familiar with your skin and your own pattern moles, freckles, and “beauty marks...

Skin Cancer Doctor
... Existing moles that begin to grow, itch or bleed...

Melanoma
... NORMAL MOLES Normal moles are generally uniform in color, such as tan, brown or black, and have a distinct border separating the mole from your surrounding skin...

Skin Cancer
... Melanoma beings in melanocyte, the cells throughout the skin that produce the pigment called melanin which makes the skin tan; clusters of melanocyte are what make up moles...

Everything You Need to Know About Skin Cancer
...People with fair skin, several moles or freckles, or a family history of skin cancer are also at an increased risk for developing skin cancers...

Melanoma Early Detection is Key
... Anyone can get melanoma, but people with the following traits are at a higher risk: Fair skin Excessive sun exposure during childhood Family history of melanoma More than 50 moles on the skin Several freckles Sun-sensitive skin that rarely tans or burns easily Melanoma can appear suddenly as a new mole, or it can grow slowly, near or in an existing mole...

Monitoring Your Moles
Although moles are usually harmless, in some cases they can become cancerous, causing melanoma...

Moles
Moles are brown or black growths, usually round or oval, that can appear anywhere on the skin...

Skin Cancer Information
... Melanoma begins in the melanocyte, the cells throughout the skin which produce the pigment Melanin which makes the skin tan; clusters of melanocytes make up moles...

Types of Skin Cancers
... Melanoma begins in the melanocyte, the cells throughout the skin which produce the pigment Melanin which makes the skin tan; clusters of melanocytes make up moles...

Healthy Tan or Damaged Skin? How to Detect and Prevent Sun Damage
...It may be time to visit your dermatologist about potential sun damage if you: Experience a severe sunburn with blistering or other serious side effects, or if you have a history of sunburns Notice changes to existing skin growths or develop new or irregular shaped moles or spots, as these could be indications that you have skin cancer Have sun spots on your skin, especially if they appear suddenly or are dark in color Have a family history of skin cancer At a minimum, you should visit a dermatologist once a year to have your body inspected for moles or growths...

Skin Cancer Treatments
...Keep these questions in mind when examining bumps, marks, or moles on the skin: - Is it asymmetrical (one side is different in shape from the other side)...

Vitiligo
...It also appears in body folds, near moles or at the site of previous skin injury...

Birthmarks/Pigmented Skin
...They can be moles (congenital nevi) that are present at birth, Mongolian spots, which look like bluish bruises and appear more frequently on people with dark skin, or café-au-lait spots that are flat, light brown or tan and roughly form an oval shape...

Moles (Nevi)
Moles are brown or black growths, usually round or oval, that can appear anywhere on the skin...

Skin Growths
Seborrheic Keratosis Moles (Nevi) Warts Actinic Keratosis

Diabetes-Related Skin Conditions
...It also appears in body folds, near moles or at the site of previous skin injury...