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Removal of Seborrheic Keratoses

What is a seborrheic keratosis?

A seborrhoeic keratosis is a harmless warty spot that appears during adult life as a common sign of skin aging. Some people have hundreds of them. They are non-cancerous growths that develop on the surface of the skin. They are usually brown in color and often multiply in number and size.

Who gets seborrheic keratosis?

Seborrhoeic keratoses are extremely common. It has been estimated that over90% of adults over the age of 60 years have at least one. They occur in males and females of all races, typically beginning to erupt in the 30s or 40s. They are uncommon under the age of 20 years. They tend to run in families so if you have relatives with seborrheic keratosis, chances are you may develop them as well.

Clinical features of seborrheic keratosis:

Seborrhoeic keratoses can have a highly variable appearance.

  • Flat or raised papule or plaque
  • 1 mm to several cm in diameter
  • Skin coloured, yellow, grey, light brown, dark brown, black or mixed colours
  • Smooth, waxy or warty surface
  • Solitary or grouped in certain areas, such as within the scalp, under the breasts, over the spine or in the groin

They appear to stick on to the skin surface like barnacles.

Variants of seborrhoeic keratoses include:

  • Solar lentigo: flat circumscribed pigmented patches in sun exposed sites
  • Dermatosis papulosa nigra: small, pedunculated and heavily pigmented seborrhoeic keratoses on head and neck of darker skinned individuals
  • Stucco keratoses: gray, white or yellow papules on the lower extremities
  • Inverted follicular keratosis
  • Large cell acanthoma
  • Lichenoid keratosis: an inflammatory phase preceding involution of some seborrhoeic keratoses and solar lentigines

Diagnosis

Seborrheic keratosis is diagnosed by your dermatologist during physical examination. Your dermatologist may recommend a skin biopsy to confirm the diagnosis.

Treatment

An individual seborrheic keratosis can be removed easily if desired. Reasons for removal include that it is unsightly, itchy, or catches on clothing.

Methods of removal include:

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Sheth Dermatology& Mohs Surgery Center

9131 West 151st Street
Orland Park, IL 60462

(708) 323 DERM (3376)

(708) 390-0842