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About Skin Tags

What is Skin Tags?

All you wanted to know about skin tags

Skin tags are very common. Though they are harmless and do not cause any pain, people choose to get them removed because they look unsightly. Skin tags may cause inconvenience if clothes or jewellery rubs onto them.

What are skin tags?

Skin tags are small, soft skin growths. They look like balloons of hanging skin. They grow normally up to a few millimetres in size. In rare cases, they tend to be as big as 5 cm. Skin tags however are harmless. They can occur anywhere on the body but the most common areas for skin tags are armpits and neck. Some other areas where skin tags are commonly found are the eyelids, upper chest, groin folds and buttock folds. Skin tags usually appear where the skin rugs itself or with the clothes. Tags can also develop where skin rubs against the skin. For this reason, they are often found in babies who are plump. Young children also get skin tags under their eyelids due to rubbing of the eyes. Older children may get tags in the under arms due to friction and irritation from sports and boisterous activities.

Skin tags do not cause any pain or physical discomfort and they are absolutely harmless. But if they make you feel conscious about your own self or they affect your self-esteem due to their unsightly appearance, you can get them removed. There are several methods of removing tags. They can be burnt or they can be frozen. Diathermy , Cryotherapy , Lamprobe radio frequency and laser therapy such as Co2 or Erbium laser resurfacing are the common procedures used for removing the skin tags.

Smaller tags that are narrow at the base can be treated by one at his own home. You may use a cotton or dental floss. Tie it around the base of the skin tag. This will cut off the supply of the blood to the tag and it would fall off on its own. If you have bigger tags, do not try it as it can result in heavy bleeding.


Who is the best candidate?

Almost everyone gets skin tags at some point or the other in their lives. Tags are usually acquired. They are not present at the time of birth. They are more common in middle aged people, though children and older people may also acquire them. People who are obese are at an increased risk of getting skin tags. High blood fat and sugar leads to the development of condition called acanthosis nigricans in obese people. In this, tags occur on the skin of their neck and armpits. Tags are also common in pregnant women due to the rise of certain hormones during pregnancy. As tags are harmless, they can be removed during or after pregnancy.

Side effects:

Skin tags are harmless skin growths. They do not become cancerous even if left untreated. Only in rare cases, do they become precancerous or cancerous. If you have tags and they bleed, or they are pink, brown, red, or black in colour, you may consult your doctor. He would examine the tags and may conduct a biopsy to find out if they indicate any serious underlying condition or disease.

What is the Cost?

The cost of removing the skin tags would depend on the size of the tags, the method of removal, equipment chosen , your location, and the experience and qualification of the surgeon or doctor. To get the exact cost, visit your doctor in your local city. The average cost for a tag removal can start from $60 and up.

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