Dysplastic nevus


 Seeking the expertise of a skin cancer specialist becomes crucial when dealing with atypical moles. A dermatologist specializes in diagnosing and treating skin diseases, including skin cancer.

Your doctor may conduct:

  • Skin examinations once or twice a year to monitor changes in moles (or every three to six months if there’s a family history of melanoma).
  • Dermoscopy employing a magnifying device called a dermatoscope to detect abnormalities in moles that are not visible to the naked eye.
  • Mole mapping involves utilizing a specialized camera equipped with a dermatoscopic lens to create a digital map of your skin and moles.

Changes in moles

It is advisable to conduct regular self-examinations of your skin to monitor any changes in moles or the skin. Doctors suggest checking your skin at least once a month, particularly if you have atypical moles or other risk factors for skin cancer. Additionally, capturing photographs can be a helpful tool in detecting changes from month to month.

When inspecting moles for indications of skin cancer, it’s crucial to remember the ABCDE rule:

A – Asymmetrical or irregular shape.

B – Borders that are blurry, ragged, or notched.

C – Colors that encompass a range of shades like browns, blacks, reds, or blues.

D – Diameter larger than a pencil eraser (1/4 of an inch).

E – Evolving changes over time, such as moles that

increase in size, alter in shape or color, bleed, or itch.

If you observe anything unusual, even if you believe it’s insignificant, it’s crucial to contact a doctor.


Unless a skin biopsy reveals cancer or pre-cancerous alterations, further treatment is generally unnecessary for an atypical mole. Your doctor might use terms like atypical melanocytic hyperplasia or moderately to severely dysplastic to characterize biopsy results, indicating a heightened cancer risk. In such cases, additional surgery is often employed by your doctor to address the mole.

The treatment for atypical moles typically involves surgically removing the mole along with a small border of surrounding skin. If the biopsy identifies cancer (melanoma) associated with the atypical mole, your doctor may opt for a more extensive surgical removal or Mohs surgery, which aims to preserve surrounding healthy tissue.