Seborrheic Keratoses

Seborrheic keratoses are common skin growths most often found in older adults. These growths are noncancerous and are usually brown, black or tan in color. Seborrheic keratoses are characterized by a waxy texture and usually appear as slightly elevated growths that appear in clusters or by themselves. They generally do not cause irritation, but, depending on the location of the growth, are occasionally removed for comfort or cosmetic reasons.

How To Identify Seborrheic Keratoses

Seborrheic keratoses are slightly elevated off of the skin and have a wart-like appearance. They can range in color from tan to black and occasionally they may itch. Scratching the growth can cause irritation and in some cases, infection. If multiple seborrheic keratoses develop in a short amount of time in one area, or there are any changes in the skin, the area should be examined by a medically-trained professional.

Why Do Seborrheic Keratoses Develop?

Seborrheic Keratoses develop for unknown reasons. However, they tend to be hereditary and people over the age of 40 are more likely to develop them.

Treatment for Seborrheic Keratoses

While seborrheic keratoses tend to be harmless and painless, they can be removed for cosmetic reasons or if clothing irritates the area. A medically-trained professional may suggest various treatment options including the following:

Cryosurgery can be an effective method of removal. This procedure freezes the growth with liquid nitrogen.

Curettage is a method which involves scraping the cells which form the seborrheic keratoses off of the skin with a special instrument.

Ablation is a form of treatment which vaporizes the growth from the skin using a laser. Multiple laser options are available and a medical professional can suggest the best one for your condition.

Electrocautery is a longer treatment method which uses an electric current to remove the growth.

The best method of treatment can be determined by a medically-trained professional. While seborrheic keratoses are a painless growth, any changes in coloration, bleeding or irritation should be examined. To arrange a consultation call the Skin & Cancer Center of Scottsdale at (480) 596-1110.

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