DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Mole excision. Doctor using a scalpel and scissors to remove a mole from the back of a female patient. Moles or pigmented naevi are caused by abnormality or overactivity of the skin cells known as melanocytes, which produce the brown pigment melanin. Moles are brown to dark brown in colour. They are uncommon at birth and develop during childhood and young adulthood. Most naevi are harmless and do not require removal. Surgical removal is required in moles that become malignant (cancerous) or in those located at sites of friction causing bleeding. Some moles are also removed for purely cosmetic reasons.
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