Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Mole Underlying Cause

The cause for skin moles is unknown. A special kind of skin cell, known as a melanocyte, produces melanin. Melanin is the pigment in the skin that that provides the brown color. Ultraviolet light may cause the melanocyte to produce melanin. Melanin also prevents the sun's harmful ultraviolet rays from penetrating the deep layers of skin, where the rays may damage skin.

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Last Updated: Jun 19, 2009 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Mole References
  1. Muhn CY, From L, Glied M. Detection of artificial changes in mole size by skin self-examination. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2000 May;42(5 Pt 1):754-9. [10775850]
  2. Seidenari S, Pellacani G, Grana C. Colors in atypical nevi: a computer description reproducing clinical assessment. Skin Res Technol. 2005 Feb;11(1):36-41. [15691257]
  3. Tilliss TS. Examination of skin moles. Am J Dent. 1997 Aug;10(4):164-5. [9590901]
  4. Weinstock MA, Nguyen FQ, Martin RA. Enhancing skin self-examination with imaging: evaluation of a mole-mapping program. J Cutan Med Surg. 2004 Jan-Feb;8(1):1-5. [15688095]
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