We treat a wide range of skin lesions at our clinic and one of the types we see most often is the skin tag. In this article we look more at why we remove skin tags, and the different methods that our Doctors and Surgeons use.
What are they?
Skin tags are very common lesions that are easily recognisable as they develop in such a way as to protrude or hang from your skin. Many people get them removed as they can become irritating and inflamed, or aesthetically undesirable, especially if they are in an obvious area.
They are cutaneous lesions (on the skin) that are not congenital. They generally occur during adulthood and particularly throughout middle age.
What can cause them?
Both men and women can develop skin tags, and they occur more commonly in skin folds or creases caused by skin rubbing against skin.
During pregnancy, new skin that develops is often exposed to friction which can lead to skin tags. Elevated hormone levels during the gestation period can also increase their likelihood.
When can skin tags become problematic?
Skin tags are basically harmless and do not cause tend to cause discomfort or pain unless they are repeatedly irritated, rubbed or scratched as may happen with clothing, jewellery or when shaving. They are, however, often aesthetically unappealing. They commonly cause a loss of confidence or self-esteem, especially if they are in a noticeable area and large in size.
In some rare cases, skin tags can fall off, but surgery is the route many people choose for instant and permanent removal. You should never try to remove skin tags by yourself or use the services of a non-medical individual as you can cause unnecessary complications and infections that may become more serious.
How do we remove skin tags?
At Skin Surgery Clinic we have three different methods to remove skin tags.
The first is using a Hyfrecator. This is an electrical cauterising blade that cuts away the skin tag and simultaneously closes the wound behind. The treatment is carried out under local anaesthetic to reduce discomfort. You will be given advice on how to care for the area post treatment.
We also use the CO2RE Laser for skin tag removal, which ablates the skin tag. Again, local anaesthetic is used. The treatment is surprisingly quick and, as the skin isn’t broken, recovery times tend to be even shorter – as little as seven to ten days in some cases.
Finally, we offer a surgical excision procedure, carried out by a Consultant Plastic Surgeon. This is typically chosen when neither the Hyfrecator or Laser are suitable for a particular patient. The skin tags are surgically removed, leaving very small wounds which are sutured by the Surgeon.
Our surgical team carefully examine your skin tag(s) before any treatment to assess your medical background and determine the best method of removal. We offer this completely free of charge via an Online Consultation.
We only offer treatment carried out by specialist and highly experienced doctors – either a Consultant Plastic Surgeons, or a GP with a specialist qualification in Minor Surgery. A fully qualified Nurse or Health Care Assistant is always present to assist during these procedures.
How do I book in for a procedure?
You are entitled to a free Online Consultation with one of our Surgical Nurses. During the consultation, your skin tag will be assessed, and a decision will be made whether it is suitable for treatment and what type of treatment would be most beneficial.
On the day of your procedure, you will also be examined by the Doctor or Surgeon.
Do you have questions? We’d be happy to answer them. Pop them in the comments below or get in touch with the clinic.