Plastic Surgery?? - Annandale,VA

Updated on March 16, 2012
K.L. asks from Annandale, VA
16 answers

About a year ago I went to a dermatologist (one I'd never been to before but my husband goes there). I had them remove a weird mole from my shoulder. It was gross and I was worried about skin cancer. Sorry this is disgusting, but... it was about the size, shape and "feel" of a rice krispy! Very weird (and it had always just been a normal mole). Anyway, they took it off and put a band-aid on it and away I went. It didn't occur to me to ask if I needed stitches. It was the first time I had ever had something like that done, and I assumed they knew what they were doing! Fast forward one year - it has healed all weird. It's round, about the size of my pinky nail and it bubbles out. It looks so gross to me!! When I wear anything sleeveless I am self conscious. I know it's vain, but do you think I could have it fixed? Should I go to a dermatologist? A plastic surgeon? Back to the original derm. and tell them to fix what they screwed up? I don't know what to do. It itches too, and drives me crazy at times. My husband tried to make me feel better, as far as how ugly it is. He told me it looks like I got shot, and that makes me tough. UGH! What would you do??

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So What Happened?

Thanks so much for taking the time to answer my question! And Donna S., a HUGE thank you to you for giving me a name for this thing!! I think you are absolutely right. I googled it after I read your answer and that's EXACTLY what it looks like. And I truly don't think I am having self esteem issues. This thing is ugly - just google keloid scars and you'll see. I was underestimating how big it is too - it's about the size of a dime. I don't mind a scar, it's just that this one might make people want to stop eating their dinner if they're out with me. I'd almost rather have it fixed and still have a scar, but no longer a puffy lump. I'm off to call a NEW dermatologist. Thanks guys!

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answers from Norfolk on

Hi, K.:
It sounds like you have a Keloid scar.
Get a diagnosis first. Go to another Dermatologist
to get a second opinion.
Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Richmond on

honey, if a mole itches and bleeds.. you need to go back to the doctor.. now, there is something wrong.
K. h.

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answers from San Antonio on

I have a scar on my face that goes from up in my nose down to my lip. I have a scar around my one nostril.

There are days when I swear it's the biggest thing in the world and anyone who sees me can only see my scar. However, if I mention it to anyone, they usually lean in and say something like "Oh, I never noticed that before!"

I was born with a cleft lip and some days feel like I'm the ugliest person in the world. Other days I'm just amazed at how awesome my plastic surgeon was! He met with my parents several days after I was born and I worked with him until I was 21 and he retired. He did all my work and I thank God for him.

If it bothers you that much, then go have it looked it at. But from the one time I had a mole removed, it looks like I was shot. It hasn't changed a whole lot since then. I would just get over it and move on. Yeah, we all have something we're insecure about. We don't obsess over it though...and if we do, we go have it looked at to see if we can fix it.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dayton on

It's been my understanding that that is just what dermatologist do-chop it off and slap a band aid on it. So I would not go back to them-they did their job as far as they're concerned.
I would go to the plastic surgeon.
My DH has a small cyst removed from his shoulder and I had a mole that sounds like your's twin-only between my boobs. : /
We both have ugly bumpy scars.
I did not find out until later that if I wanted it to heal completely I should have had a surgeon do it. : /
If you can afford to-go for it.
For me...I lived w/ a mole I despised for 30 years...I can deal w/ a scar. :)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

I would start by going to a new dermatologist and see what they say. They can tell you if it was not removed properly, why it is itching, etc. And they should be able to tell you your options.
If it is really bugging you and you are self-conscious about it then, yes I think you can consider plastic surgery if it is your only option. Sounds like it would be a minor thing although you would probably always have some sort of scar. Your description of it made me think of those small pox vaccines (I think that is what they are) that we no longer get in the US but they still give them in other countries. My husband who is from Jordan has a big quarter size pink square on his arm near his shoulder from his vaccine. So your husband is probably right and no one else really pays attention to it.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New York on

I would definitely call the first dermatologist and have htem look. Vanity aside, why is it itching? Ruling out other health issues with the scar would be my first priority.

Then maybe you can get a referral to a plastic surgeon.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Go to a plastic surgeon. Derms love to shave it off and say it'll heal fine but I always had it leave a gross scar. A plastic surgeon will tell you if he can fix it depending where it is, how much skin there is there and the tension on the skin. I'm guessing most likely they can make it better but it'll still take probably a year for the scar from that to start fading.

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on

I've had a few small moles taken off by a plastic surgeon. I had one taken off my nose, ear (right on the cartilage bump), and right between my eyebrows (I know, ick!). These left no scars at all.

The only one I had taken off by a dermatologist, on my stomach, and the scar looks awful. Plastic surgeons know how to put in very small stitches that will heal almost invisibly.

I don't think it's vain or selfish to get moles or scars dealt with. If it bothers you, and especially since it itches, I would check into getting it removed by a plastic surgeon. They can tell you up front what it will cost.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

If you are well off, insurance will pay 80%, you have no outstanding credit card bills, no loans other than house and vehicles, food is plentiful, bills are all paid up, kids have no needs and most wants have been supplied, etc...then having something so trivial is fine.

If this was painful, got irritated each and every time you put on clothes, bled frequently, had drainage or some other medical issue, then it would need to be treated and fixed.

We all get scars and live with them. If you have a spot on your shoulder you are probably the only one noticing it. I would think that a little concealer would fix that right up.

Yes, do call the office of the doc who did the surgery and ask if they will fix it. They may have put on a butterfly bandage and expected that to hold the sides together and it heal accordingly. Most small incisions do not get stitches anymore.

Talk to a couple of docs. Get a couple of estimates. See if your insurance will cover any of this, I really doubt they will pay for any of it. They will see it as purely cosmetic.

Talk to hubby about starting a savings account with the amount needed as the goal. Perhaps going to work to earn the money to pay for it will make it happen sooner. You should feel good about yourself but sometimes we just live with the war wounds we get from life. There are options for you! I hope you can make the choice and feel good about yourself again.

This is what I "heard" in your post.

I am insecure, I have a blemish and it makes me feel ugly, my hubby is lying to me when he says it's not noticeable, I am ugly. You are not ugly.

If you step back and think of this issue like this, do you need to work on self image issues? How is your self esteem?

If those things are okay then I apologize, that's just what I got out of the post.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Cumberland on

When I have something removed that is deep-the plastic surgeon does it-the dermo determines what needs to go-and the surgeon removes it-the plastic surgeon is so adept at what he does-there is virtually no mark left when it heals! It's like a superficial scratch that a kitten would make! The Dermatology and Plastic Surgery Center in Bethesda is wonderful-the plastic surgeon they use has a practice in Virginia. I would go back to the original dermo first-and see who they suggest.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

I had one removed off my stomach about 10 years ago.
At first the scar looked just like you described.
But now I can't even tell I ever had anything removed from there.
It fades over time and waiting for it to fade costs nothing.
There are band aid type things at the pharmacy you can get/wear that will help to fade scars and make them less noticeable and they are a lot less expensive than plastic surgery and stitching it now will leave you with an even more noticeable scar.
If you think sun exposure might have caused the funny looking mole in the first place, short sleeves are probably not a bad idea (and sun isn't good for scars either).



answers from Richmond on

Definitely go to a new dermatologist and have them check it out. They can refer you to a plastic surgeon if need be (and if they refer you, you've got a better shot of it being covered by your insurance).


answers from Washington DC on

the concern for me isn't how it looks (as the others have told you, it's almost certainly a way bigger deal for you than for anyone else), but the odd appearance and even more, the itchiness, does concern me. i have no clue whether it means anything ominous, but i'd certainly have it checked out. and i would go to a new dermatologist first to get a different opinion. if all is well and it's still bugging you, by all means, make an appointment with a plastic surgeon!



answers from Dover on

Definitely sounds like a keloid. I know it happened at a Derm office, but trust me, it even happens in Plastic offices. We remove things all the time from our patients (plastics office) and although most do great with little to no scarring, some people are just more prone to developing a keloid. Usually, there is no way to predict this, unless you have developed keloids in the past (our skin of color patients tend to have higher incidence of keloiding). Anyway, best treatment for keloids (standard of care in medicine) is to inject with steriods (kenalog is what I use for patients). I would think your derm office could competently treat this medical issue. Just be patient with treatment time to correct can take multiple injections over a period of time to reduce the size of the keloid.

Good luck and hopefully you can find a great medical professional to help you soon!



answers from Syracuse on

I think I would start by going back to the original dermatologist and see what they have to say. From there I'd go see a plastic surgeon if needed. If it's really bothering you, and it sounds like it is even if only for cosmetic reasons, then get it fixed. If you can afford it, why not, you'll feel better. If money is an issue, then at least you can find out what it would cost and plan for it from there.



answers from Redding on

I think when you obsess about something so much, it just makes it appear even larger to you when in truth, most other people likely don't even notice it.
Your husband knows it's there and was probably just trying to deflect if you are focusing on it all the time.

I got a mole under my right eye and didn't think anything of it. Until it started hurting and growing at a rapid pace. Then it turned all scaley and scabby. I went to the doctor and he referred me right away to a dermatologist.
He sliced it off to send it to the lab to check for cancer and then cauterized (burnt) the area around it to stop the bleeding. I had to wear a huge, glaring white patch under my eye and wasn't able to take it off for a few days. Yes, I went to work like that. When I finally was able to take the bandage off and look, I was horrified. I had this huge, black, burnt, slimy spot that I had to keep covered with a band-aid for a couple of weeks. I was told to put vaseline on it every day and change the band-aid.
HOWEVER, I was so happy that it turned out NOT to be skin cancer that the rest of it was something I gladly put up with.
That was in August, if I remember correctly, and believe it or not, unless I turn just right in the sun, you can't even tell there was ever a mark there in the first place. I'm super happy about that, but the truth is, if I had to go through life with a blip under my eye it wouldn't have bothered me. I'd already had to go through the bandage and band-aid thing. No one ran from me screaming in horror.

I'm not one to worry about slight imperfections and in my opinion, the most beautiful thing about anyone is their confidence.

If the scar on your shoulder is really bothering you, get it evaluated. They may be able to lessen how noticeable it is to others, but you will always be aware of an imperfection there.

That is just my opinion.

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