When you first find seborrheic keratosis it can be disconcerting at best, and downright frightening at worst, because they do look as if they are serious skin problems, however, you can relax, as they are benign growths that occur as you age that occur because of exposure to the sun.
When you first notice one on your back or neck or chest, the first thing to do is remember not to panic. As noted, the keratosis is caused by sun damage to your skin after an exposure of many years, this is why they tend to become more noticeable as you age. Seborrheic keratosis begins somewhere after 40 and everyone usually has one at some point during their lifetime.
If you notice one, contact your primary care physician first so that he or she may have a look at it. Often, they will confirm that it is just a keratosis and tell you not to worry about it because they are benign growths.
If you are still concerned, you can, of course, check with a source like WebMD, just to make sure that you have a seborrheic keratosis and then follow the recommendations they give you. However, since their recommendations are usually made up of the opinions of several doctors, it would be wisest to follow the advice of only one physician, your primary care physician who may recommend visiting a dermatologist for further advice.
On a visit to a dermatologist, the physician will look closely at the growth to ensure that it is a keratosis and if there is any hint that it might not be, the dermatologist may order a biopsy of the growth just to be certain it is nothing more than a keratosis.
In nearly 10 cases out of 10, the results of the biopsy are keratosis and it is usually benign.
One thing that you will notice, if you discuss the growth with a dermatologist is that he may use a special light on it to help with the diagnosis. This is nothing to worry about as it just shows the keratosis in more detail.
Usually, like your own primary care physician, the dermatologist will give likely just tell you to keep an eye on the growth and will do very little more about it because the growth is a normal part of the aging process in people with sun-damaged skin.
In extreme or cosmetic cases, the dermatologist may recommend one of several courses of action that could include localized surgical procedures, cryotherapy and such.
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