When to see a Doctor for Your Child’s Birthmark,Birthmark Removal in New York

By Nicholas Bastidas, MD on 06/10/2020 3:54 PM

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When to see a Doctor for Your Child’s Birthmark,Birthmark Removal in New York
Birthmarks are fairly common. Approximately one-third of infants are born with birthmarks — sometimes called macular stains — often on the neck, forehead or eyelids. Most birthmarks are pink or red in color and can get darker when the infant cries or in various room temperatures.
Oddly enough, no one is entirely sure what causes birthmarks. They are not inherited nor are they caused by anything that happens during pregnancy. For some infants, birthmarks disappear before their second birthday (“stork bites”).
A majority of birthmarks are harmless, but there are some that represent a more serious medical condition. How do you know which type of birthmark is something to worry about? Let’s take a look at different types of birthmarks:
Nevus sebaceous
This is a type of birthmark that’s technically classified as a hair follicle tumor. It can appear on the face, neck, or forehead, but it’s more commonly found on the scalp. When it’s on the scalp, no hair grows out of it, so it is visible as bald spot in your child. The way nevi sebaceous looks can vary depend on the age of the person but can appear as thick skin or a patch of warts. Usually, it grows in size as the individual ages. As you age, there is also an increased risk of the nevus sebaceous transforming into a basal cell skin cancer.
Mostly, these birthmarks only have cosmetic symptoms. There’s no itching or pain but depending on where they are located on the body, they could be bothersome. These birthmarks don’t always require medical treatment, but some people will choose to have a Nevi sebaceous removed.   Dr. Bastidas offers nevus sebaceous removal in the office setting under local anesthesia.  Nevus sebaceous surgery is performed in both the long island and new york city offices.  
Congenital nevi, Congenital Nevus in New York
Congenital nevi are a type of pigmented birthmark, also known as moles or “beauty marks”. They are often various shades of pink, light brown or black. They do not have a specific size and they can be flat against the skin or raised. Most of the time, moles are round and can be anywhere on the body — even on the face. Some moles may fade over time, but often get darker and can even grow hairy patches. However, a change in a mole can be a sign of cancer. It’s always a good idea to monitor a mole for changes in size and color. Dr. Bastidas can remove congenital nevi, moles, in either his New York City or Long island office under local anesthesia.  Congenital nevus removal surgery is covered by your insurance.  
Café au lait spots
These birthmarks are pale brown, resembling “coffee with milk” as their name suggests. These spots can make an appearance anytime from birth to early childhood. While they may be larger in size than a typical birthmark, they often fade over time. It’s not uncommon to have more than one café au lait spot, but if your child has several, it can be a sign of a rare medical condition known as neurofibromatosis.
Spitz nevus
This is a rare type of mole, which is usually pink (but can be red, black, blue, tan or brown) and is dome shaped. Spitz nevus are usually found on the face, neck or legs and can grow quickly. Sometimes these moles might bleed or ooze. These moles require direct observation and more often excisional biopsy to prevent malignant changes.   Dr. Bastidas works hand and hand with your dermatologist to decide when to excise a spitz nevus.  He performs Spitz nevus excision in both the NYC and Long Island offices under local anesthesia.   
Hemangiomas, NY and Long Island
Hemangiomas are a type of vascular birthmark — occurs when extra blood vessels come together in a visible cluster — that can be pink, red or even blue. These start out small and flat, and while they may change in shape or size, they often fade by the time a child reaches adolescence. They are usually found on the arms, legs, head or neck.
Most of the time, hemangiomas are harmless. However, if it is fast-growing, it might need medical treatment (propanolol) or removal, so it doesn’t affect a child’s eyesight or breathing. If a child has multiple hemangiomas, they should see a doctor to ensure there are no internal hemangiomas.
Other types of birthmarks include Mongolian blue spots, which resemble a bruise and are often found on the lower back and buttocks. There are also salmon patches are red or pink patches usually seen between the eyes or on the eyelids, and sometimes fade in color; port-wine stains   
When to see a doctor
As you’ve read, a majority of birthmarks are harmless and only some require medical attention or treatment. If you see a birthmark, it’s a good idea to point it out to your pediatrician, internist, or dermatologist so they can help you monitor it over time.
Monitoring a birthmark means looking for changes in size, elevation and color. You can take pictures of birthmarks, or even measure them to keep track of any changes. If you notice rapid growth, it’s time to notify a doctor. Make an appointment if the birthmark bleeds or begins to ulcerate.
For more information on birthmarks or when to see a doctor, feel free to contact us today.   Dr. Bastidas available for all birthmark removal and can perform the excisions with minimal discomfort, pain, and recovery using advanced local anesthetic techniques in both the Long Island and NYC locations.

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