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Warts vs. Moles - What You Need To Know?

Dr. Himanshu Gupta 92% (209 ratings)
Fellow of ACSI , Fellow of IADVL , MD - Dermatology, Venereology & Leprosy, MBBS
Dermatologist, Ghaziabad  •  13 years experience
Warts vs. Moles - What You Need To Know?

Everyone wants to have a bright and radiating skin. But blemishes and skin abnormalities are common and can occur due to lifestyle, diet or hormonal imbalances. Moles and warts are typical skin issues. But how do you tell them apart?

Moles – What are they?

Hardly ever causing pain, they appear in many different colours and can be bumpy or flat. Most often of red, brown or black colour, they occur as a result of skin pigmentation called melanocytes. They can be caused due to direct exposure to sunlight or due to genetic factors as well. They can appear in any part of the body and form slowly, taking a long time to grow.

Warts – What are they?

Small bumps or rough growth on the skin that appear in hands, legs, fingers, soles of the feet, face or in the genital area manifest as warts. They are white or pale. They occur as a result of harmful virus infection of Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) and hence, can be contagious. As opposed to moles, warts need to be removed quickly since a virus causes them.

How do you differentiate a mole from a wart?
Below are some common characteristics of each that can help you identify the skin problem:

Moles

  • Either flat or elevated from the skin, they are commonly referred to as beauty marks or birth marks.
  • At times, they have hair growing from them.
  • Usually, they have one colour – mostly on the darker side.
  • It cannot be transmitted between people.
  • They are generated by a collection of pigment cells in the body and darken during hormonal changes.
  • They tend to become cancerous and lead to melanoma.

Warts

  • They are harmless, yet contagious.
  • They have small black or dark dots in the centre that are tiny blood vessels, which provide them with nutrients.
  • They grow outwards on the skin with a scaly or bumpy deposit.
  • They can grow anywhere on the body, but are commonly found in feet, hands or fingers.

How to treat warts and moles?

The good news is that both warts and moles do not pose a grave risk to your health, but they are annoying and can turn dangerous in the long run. Especially with warts, you can give it to someone or acquire from someone, since it is a type of virus infection. So, seek medical assistance if you want them to be removed from your skin.

Be aware of the difference between warts and moles to know what you are dealing with. Consult a dermatologist to decide the right steps to remove it or not.

Both warts and moles can be treated with Radiofrequency ablation or CO2 laser.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

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