Skin Tags

Last reviewed by Dr.Mary on August 7th, 2018.

What are Skin tags?

They are benign, tiny out pouching skin which is normally attached to the skin underlying it by a stalk which is thin. Skin tags often look like tiny pieces of skin that is hanging and normally occur in those sites where clothes rub up against any skin as well as areas where there is friction from skin-to-skin, for example as underarms, groin, upper chest as well as neck. Cutaneous skin tags are usually small and harmless skin growths.

These skin tags are never there at birth but their occurrence grows with age. They may be seen in about 25% of all adults. Research has shown the possibility of a genetic tendency to the growth of these tags. As a result, these tags of skin run in families.

Tags of skin are known by the medical term as acrochordon. Often, other terms are used to refer to these tags. These can include soft warts, soft fibromas, fibroepithelial polyps or FEP, pedunculated fibroma as well as fibroma pendulans. Other names are cutaneous tag, cutaneous papilloma, soft fibroma, papilloma colli as well as Templeton skin.

Skin Tags Causes

Cutaneous tags are very frequent growths of skin. They are thought to grow because of friction between regions of skin which are adjacent or between skin and clothing. Bunches of blood vessels as well as collagen are trapped inside these thicker bits of skin. They commonly form in skin folds. The sites which are most common for these skin tags often include the upper chest (beneath the breast if women), underarms, eyelids, neck as well as folds of the groin. Because overweight or obese individuals have the most contact skin-to-skin as well as friction, tags of skin are most common in these individuals. While skin tags can regularly be seen in children, normally they have a propensity to boost with age and are more widespread in older or middle-aged individuals. They are normally painless and do not change or grow. These tags are very common in individuals who have diabetes.

Research has connected an inherited receptiveness to the increase of tags of skin. In individuals who have Crohn’s disease, these skin tags are often established about the opening of the anus – perianal skin tags – are frequent. During the changes in hormones during pregnancy this can also encourage skin tags to grow – normally during the 2nd trimester of the pregnancy.

Tags of skin are not cancerous. Any accounts of skin cancers arising in tags of skin are very rare.

Risk factors are factors which increase the probability of growing a disease or condition. Risk factors for skin tags are more frequent in:

  • Individuals who are obese or overweight, since they have more skin folds as well as skin creases
  • Women who are pregnant because of hormones
  • Those with diabetes
  • Individuals with HPV or human papillomas virus
  • Steroid use which is illegal – this interferes with muscles as well as body which cause the fibers or collagen in the skin to attach, letting skin tags form.

Skin Tags Symptoms

These tags are normally flesh in color or can appear brown in those individuals with light-skinned. They can be wrinkled or smooth as well as range in size from extremely tiny – 1 mm – to approximately the size of a grape. Even though it is normally possible to identify a stalk which attaches the skin tag to the underlying skin, very tiny skin tags can look like bumps which are raised on the skin.

Other distinctiveness includes:

  • Can be located on the armpits, neck, body folds, trunk, or other areas
  • Often have narrow stalk
  • Normally skin-colored, but occasionally darker

If a skin tag is twisted on its blood supply, it can turn black or red. These tags can bleed when caught on clothing or are torn some other way. Tags of skin are not painful as well as not linked with any other conditions or symptoms of the skin.

They typically don’t need medical treatment unless they become irritating to the individual or if they need removal for cosmetic reasons.

Diagnosis of tags of skin normally is made just by observation as skin tags normally have a very distinctive look.

Tests in the lab or other diagnostic studies are normally not required. But, your primary care physician can recommend that a tag of skin be excised and sent to the lab pathologist for diagnosis under the microscopy to rule out any other conditions of the skin that can develop lesions similar in appearance to skin tags. There are certain kinds of moles, benign skin growths and warts which sometimes resemble skin tags. It is extremely rare for a cancer of the skin to resemble a skin tag.

Skin Tags Treatment

Tags of skin treatment are usually only recommended when they are disturbing to the patient. The treatment involves removal surgically of the skin tag.

Self-treatments are often used, including typing off the small tag stalk with a length of threat or some dental floss as well as allowing the tag to fall off after several days.

Medications or drugs have absolutely no role in treating skin tags.

The exclusion of skin tags can also be completed by severing with scissors or a blade, using electric cautery – burning, or by freezing with liquid nitrogen. Often an ophthalmologist can be conferred with to eliminate tags of skin on the eyelid.

Anesthesia which is local is given by injections or lidocaine or the use of a topical anesthesia cream, can be designated for very large skin tags. Smaller skin tags may usually be eliminated without using any anesthesia.

The removal of skin tags is curative, even though the individual can develop more tags of skin at a later time.

Normally there are no complications. Occasionally, discomfort or irritation can occur. When cut, they can bleed greatly. Skin tags are considered to be cosmetically unsightly.

Skin Tags Pictures

on armpit on neck

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