What are skin tags? — Skin tags are small growths of normal skin. Skin tags often grow on a short stalk or stem. They tend to form in places where the skin rubs together, such as the armpit, the neck, under the breasts, or in the groin. The medical term for skin tags is "acrochordon."
Skin tags are harmless and many people have them. The chances of getting skin tags increase as you get older. People who are overweight have a greater chance of getting skin tags. Some pregnant women develop skin tags during the middle of their pregnancy, but the skin tags often shrink or go away after the baby is born. Skin tags also seem to run in some families.
Should I see a doctor or nurse? — You should see your doctor or nurse if:
You are not sure that what you have is a skin tag.
The skin tag is irritated and painful.
Is there a test for skin tags? — No. There is no test. But your doctor or nurse should be able to tell if you have a skin tag by doing an exam.
How are skin tags treated? — There is usually no reason to treat skin tags. Your doctor can remove the tag if it is painful or if you don't like the way it looks. There are different ways that your doctor might remove the skin tag. These include:
Freezing the tag with a special fluid that gets very cold (called liquid nitrogen)
Cutting the tag off with surgical scissors
Burning the tag off with a special tool
Skin tags can bleed when they come off, so never try to cut or pull off a skin tag on your own.
If you have a skin tag taken off, it is not unusual to form a new skin tag in the same area.
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This topic retrieved from UpToDate on: Mar 30, 2020.
Topic 83336 Version 4.0
Release: 28.2.2 - C28.105
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