As you age, you may begin to notice some small, flesh-colored, non-cancerous growths with the scientific name of acrochordons. They are commonly called “skin tags” or “barnacles,” but whatever you call them, if you have them, take heart. Over half the population will have a skin tag at some point in their life. Skin tags are typically thought to occur where skin rubs against itself or clothing. They are harmless and do not have to be treated unless they are bothersome.
Early on, skin tags may be as tiny as a pin-head but some may become as large as a grape.
There is no strong evidence to suggest that common skin tags are contagious; people do not catch them from anyone and do not transmit them to anyone. Some people are more prone to developing skin tags than others and may have new growths periodically which require yearly or quarterly removal but skin tags do not “seed” or spread if they are removed.
Obesity and aging are commonly associated with skin tag development. Elevations in hormone levels may cause an increase in skin tags, as skin tags are more frequent in pregnant women.
They can vary in number from one to hundreds and men and women, alike, are equally prone to developing skin tags.
Skin tags are commonly found under the arms, under the breast, in the groin or buttocks folds or on the eyelids. Even though their appearance is not very appealing, skin tags generally cause no physical discomfort, and can be easily removed by a doctor or a dermatologist. Treatments include freezing, tying off with a suture or thread or simply cutting off the tag – but don’t try cutting them yourself.
If you have skin tags that are bothersome and would like to discuss their removal options, call to schedule an appointment with Dr. Quintana, today: (212) 391-8600.