Skin tag is extra growth of skin tissue, hanging off the skin as a flap with a
connecting stalk. They are most commonly present in the folds of the body
like the neck, armpits, under the breast, and groin area. They may also be
found on back and chest. Skin tags are more common in females than males,
elderly people, and people with high body mass index.
Skin tags are usually asymptomatic. However, they can become irritated if
anything, such as clothing, jewellery, or skin rubs against them.
Why do they occur?
It’s unclear exactly what causes skin tags. Since they are more common in
skin folds, friction may play a role. Type 2 diabetes and pre-diabetes, may
also play a role in the development of skin tags. Skin tags are also frequently present in pregnant ladies. Presence of multiple skin tags can be an indicator of a hormone imbalance or
an endocrine problem. Skin tags aren’t infectious and transmissible from one person to another,
however, there is a genetic predisposition. Multiple members in a family may
have skin tags.
What is the treatment?
Skin tags are removed by precisely burning the tissue using an ablative CO2
laser or radiofrequency (RF) ablation. Steps of the procedure :
The area is cleaned thoroughly.
Local anaesthesia is injected for pain relief.
Using the machine, the lesion is burnt layer by layer.
There might be some bleeding during the procedure which is controlled by
Anti-bacterial cream is applied.
Is the procedure painful?
The procedure is required to be done under anaesthesia, either topical or
local injectable, depending on the number of lesions and depth of lesions.
How many sessions are required for the treatment?
Skin tag removal is a single session procedure, however, if a person has
multiple skin tags, they may be removed in more than one sitting.
How long does the procedure takes?
Depending upon the number of lesions, the procedure takes around 45-90
How many days does it take for the skin to heal?
There occurs crust formation 2-3 days post procedure, which then falls off on
its own in next 5-7 days. So it takes around 7-10 days in total for complete
recovery of the skin. It is advisable not to pick the crusts to prevent scar
Is there any risk of scarring?
Skin tags are superficial lesions, so there is no risk of scarring. Pigmentary
changes in the form of hyper-pigmentation or hypo-pigmentation may occur,
which usually resolve spontaneously over few months.
Are the results permanent?
Skin tags are associated with advancing age, so they may recur after few
years. Proper sun protection is advisable to delay the recurrence of these
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