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Moles are a common skin condition that affects men and women of all ages. Most people will develop moles during their lifetime, and around 1 in 100 people are born with a mole. It is most common for individuals to develop new moles during childhood, which is why it is important for adults who are noticing new moles to have them seen by a dermatologist.

Your skin contains cells known as melanocytes, which contribute most of the color of your skin. Sometimes, these cells can develop in a cluster rather than being spread evenly throughout the skin. Those clustered melanocytes create the color and texture of moles.

While moles are typically non cancerous, it is important to monitor moles to make sure that they do not develop into melanomas. By having annual skin checks, people can ensure that moles do not threaten their health. I tell my patients to schedule their skin check for the month of their birthday…it’s easier to remember!

Moles are categorized into three types: congenital moles, common moles, and atypical moles.

Congenital moles are moles that you’re born with. They are almost always normal at birth. It is important to continually monitor congenital moles, as they have a higher likelihood of developing into skin cancer (melanoma) than moles that develop during life. If a congenital mole has a diameter larger than a pencil eraser, has uneven borders, or uneven color, it is essential to check for changes over time.

Common moles are typically normal, harmless and appear on the skin after birth. The majority of people have a handful of common moles on their body. However, if an individual has 50 or more common moles, they are considered to be at a higher risk of melanoma. Common moles often develop in areas that are exposed to the sun but can arise anywhere on your skin.

Atypical moles are the third type of mole and are always abnormal. They have a higher than normal rate of developing into melanoma. Also referred to as a dysplastic nevus, these moles have irregular shapes and/or colors and are usually larger than the diameter of a pencil eraser. Atypical moles may also consist of more than one color, making them easy to distinguish in comparison to other moles. These moles are also asymmetrical and can be a mixture of smooth and bumpy skin.

While atypical moles may look concerning, they are often benign but can develop into melanoma. To ensure the health of your skin, it is very important to continue to monitor atypical moles for changes. If you see a change, show it to your dermatologist even if it’s not time for your annual exam.

All moles have the potential to develop into melanoma. However, it is important to think about specific factors, such as sun exposure and the use of tanning parlors, both of which contribute to the transformation of moles into melanoma. While people should always monitor their moles at home, it is essential to work with a dermatologist to have an expert check hard-to-see areas and track the size and appearance of suspicious moles. There are several signs that a mole may be abnormal (dysplastic) or even malignant. The most common guideline to help monitor and detect abnormal moles is the ABCDE rule. Each of the following is an indicator of an abnormal mole.

  • Asymmetry: The mole is not a symmetrical shape
  • Border: The mole has irregular borders which may seem jagged
  • Color: The mole is not the same color all over. It may include shades of brown, black, pink, white, or a blue-ish tint.
  • Diameter: The mole is larger than 6 millimeters across. Most people use the size of a pencil eraser as a reference. However, size is not an exclusive factor since melanomas can be smaller than 6mm.
  • Evolving: The mole changes in size, shape, texture, or color.

Dr. Schultz has over 35 years of experience as a dermatologist. While he is a recognized expert in his field, he has special expertise in the early detection of abnormal moles while they are still benign before they have developed into a melanoma.

When it comes to assessing and treating moles, Dr. Schultz understands that many people prefer to have even normal moles removed for aesthetic reasons. His removal of these moles often create an outstanding cosmetic result.

Timing is everything when it comes to your skin’s health. It is important to work with an expert who has the acuity to know when a mole needs to be removed because it is subtly abnormal and precancerous. That is why Park Avenue Skin Care and Dr. Schultz are able to help prevent people from getting skin cancers through very early detection and removal.

Dr. Schultz performs a high volume of mole checks and removals. He works closely with the Mt. Sinai Hospital dermatopathology lab. In fact, Dr. Schultz sends Mt. Sinai Hospital the most number of biopsies in New York City. That way, patients know that they are in the best hands for their mole removal at Park Avenue Skin Care and analysis at Mt. Sinai Hospital.

Additionally, it is essential to work with a dermatologist who has the expertise to remove moles with a surgical technique that will result in minimal or no scarring or damage to the surrounding skin.

Treating (removing) moles depends on the type of mole and whether it is determined to be precancerous or already cancerous (melanoma). If the mole is being removed just for aesthetic concerns, that of course plays a role in the surgical technique Dr. Schultz uses for removal.

Dr. Schultz and the Park Avenue Skin Care team perform over 4,000 removals a year, commanding the technical experience that produces superior medical and cosmetic results. The procedure for removing all moles always involves numbing the area of the mole with local anesthesia.

Depending on the size, location and preoperative diagnosis of the mole (normal, dysplastic, or malignant), after Dr. Schultz surgically excises it with a scalpel, he may need to stitch the area closed for better cosmetic results. You are literally in good hands when you have your mole removal done by Dr. Schultz.

Patient Reviews

I've been seeing Dr. Schultz for the last 8 years and during that time, I've recommended him to countless friends for both cosmetic and medical dermatologic help. I trust him completely both diagnostically and aesthetically. When I had shingles, he was wonderful, incredibly supportive and kind. And when I eased into doing more cosmetic dermatology, he was– and continues to be– patient, careful and cautious. He listens to concerns and really hears what your goal outcome is and works with you to make it happen. I wanted to maintain a natural look while keeping my skin looking fresh and that's just what he's done for me. I always leave his office feeling prettier and well-cared for! If you have a medical concern or something about your skin you want to upgrade, you can't do better than Dr. Schultz and his wonderful team. And the products are amazing as well!

- Laura B.

Dr. Schultz is the most thorough and good natured dermatologist I have ever seen. I have been a patient of his for more than 20 years. He has taught me everything I know about the value of taking care of my skin, a gift that keeps on giving. He also takes the time to listen to me, to see me as an individual and doesn't treat my needs as a one size fits all doctor. I really appreciate his kindness, patience and expertise. I absolutely love his product line and have definitely reaped the rewards from using it, especially his glycolic peel pads and moisturizer, which I can't live without. My skin feels softer, smoother, appears more translucent and actually looks younger! Dr. Schultz helped me to see beyond the lines and wrinkles, although he so good at helping to keep those at bay while maintaining a very natural appearance. His staff is outstanding. They make you feel welcome, like family, from the moment you walk through the door. Angela, Monika, Deborah and all of the support staff are extraordinary at what they do. Thank you Dr. Schultz and everyone at Park Ave Skincare. You're the best!

- Laura M.

Dr. Schultz has truly transformed my skin, so much so that I can confidently leave the house without wearing makeup now. During my first meeting with Dr. Schultz, he intently listened to my skin concerns, we discussed what my goals were, and he explained pragmatically what treatments and products he recommended for me. I truly appreciate his fantastic bedside manner and conservative approach. I am a perfectionist in every aspect of my life, including my skin, and Dr. Schultz understood this and was committed to helping me achieve every skin goal I had. The entire staff is just so fantastic and friendly, from reception to the PAs. They make you feel welcome and extremely comfortable, which to me is very important when visiting any doctor’s office. As someone who works too much and never gets enough sleep, my skin was looking very dull and lifeless. My skin is now full of life again and has an incredible glow to it which I have never had before. And I owe it all to the incredible Dr. Schultz.

- Kelly D.

My partnership with Dr Schultz began more than 30 years ago. As a generous friend, advisor, skilled surgeon, and superb cosmetic diagnostician, he has enabled me to look my best. He has kept me abreast of the most sophisticated procedures and in so doing, has maximized my appearance, always guided by what will be most beneficial for me. He is someone I go to for advice and care and his staff is another manifestation of this care. I don’t know many patients who can say this, and I feel fortunate to be among them.

- Ellen R.

In the four years that I've been a patient of Dr. Schultz, my acne-prone skin has gone from constant breakouts to smooth and clear. These days, I feel confident and comfortable enough in my skin to wear minimal makeup, if any—which I never would have done in years past. Dr. Schultz and his warm, friendly staff always go above and beyond; he takes the time to listen, talk with me, and create the best plan for my skin. It's clear he has my best interests in mind, and I trust him wholeheartedly. I would highly recommend him to friends, family, and frankly, anyone who asks.

- Deanna P.

Each session with Dr. Schultz is a mini education in skin care. He approaches each patient as a unique individual with different needs. I’m Asian and he’s explained to me how that impacts treatment in a clear manner that a layperson can understand. At each examination, Dr. Schultz recites detailed notes to his staff which he then refers back to at each future appointment, adjusting and tweaking treatment plans when necessary. Over the past two years I’ve seen a remarkable improvement in my blemishes and overall complexion and wholeheartedly recommend Dr. Schultz to anyone looking to enhance their appearance.

- Sherry G.

I have been a patient of Dr. Schultz for many years, and I continue to be amazed at his medical approach, patience, and professionalism. He takes the time to listen to my health concerns, explains how and why he would like to issue a treatment in a way that I understand , answers all of my questions, and all of his procedures and painless and thorough. Dr. Schultz is very attentive, results-oriented, and extremely knowledgeable. He follows up and is committed to my health and satisfaction. The Park Avenue Skincare is a calm environment and the staff are all very friendly, warm, and respectful. It's easy to get appointments at a time that works for me and they are always on time and considerate. I think so highly of Dr. Schultz and his practice that I sent my mom to him, and continue to go to his office even though my life is based in midtown west! I have great confidence in the care that Dr. Schultz gives.

- Katrina A.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What are the three types of moles?

    Moles are categorized into congenital moles, common moles, and atypical moles. All Read More

  • How do I know if a mole is precancerous?

    While it is essential to have an expert assess your mole to Read More

  • How often should I get my moles checked?

    Depending on your personal and family history, how many moles you have, Read More

  • Can I just remove a mole at home?

    No, it is inadvisable to remove a mole at home even if Read More

  • How long does it take to heal from mole removal?

    Many people heal from their mole removal procedure within two to three Read More

  • Will there be a scar from my mole removal?

    Dr. Schultz is an expert at removing moles and minimizing scarring. Moles Read More

Rejuvenate Your Skin

Make your skin care a priority with leading-dermatologist and New York Magazine’s “Top Doctor”: Dr. Neal Schultz.