What are Moles (aka Nevi)?

Moles are common, typically small, round, tan/brown skin spots caused by clusters of melanin (skin pigment) cells called melanocytes.  However, moles come in a wide variety of sizes, shapes and colors. 

Moles are most common in Caucasians, but occur in all peoples.  Moles can develop on any skin location.  Starting in childhood, most people will develop between 10 and 45 moles, but will stop acquiring new ones by their 30’s or 40’s.  Moles may grow larger or darker with age or hormone changes associated with puberty of pregnancy. Sometimes, moles go away on their own over time.

Most moles are not dangerous. However, they can sometimes change and become melanoma cancer.  Unfortunately, melanoma cancer is one of the most deadly types of cancers, and needs to be caught early to be cured.

The ABCDE guide to identifying melanoma cancer is list of features that indicate that a mole may be changing into melanoma cancer or is melanoma cancer already:

  • A is for asymmetry.  One half of the mole is different appearing then the other half.
  • B is for irregular border (shape).  A mole that is not round or circular.
  • C is for color.  Multiple colors or a very dark (black) color.
  • D is for diameter.  Greater than 6 mm in diameter (about the size of a pencil eraser).
  • E is for evolving.  Evolving means changing – growing or becoming itchy or painful

What causes Moles?

The exact cause of moles is unknown; however, most moles occur as a result of a person’s genetic composition.  Sun exposure in early life may also be a predisposing factor.

How are Moles treated?

No treatment is needed if moles are known to be long-standing, without change or symptoms and do not exhibit any of the features of the ABCDE’s of melanoma. However, if a mole is new and/or changing in any way, or exhibits any symptoms/signs/features of the ABCDE characteristics of melanoma, then an evaluation by a dermatologist is necessary. 

Surgical removal and pathologic exam is recommended for any worrisome moles.



An evaluation by one of our dermatology providers will help diagnose your condition, determine whether or not any further evaluation, work-up or removal may be necessary and include advice and/or a comprehensive personalized care plan. 

Contact us at or call us at (702) 243-6400 to schedule a consultation.

Why Choose Us
At Strimling Dermatology, Laser & Vein Institute, we are committed to providing the highest quality, personalized care in a safe, friendly, caring, respectful and state-of-the-art environment; as we ourselves would want to be treated.
We respect your time and endeavor to provide prompt appointments with sufficient time to listen to your concerns, answer your questions and help you understand your condition and management or treatment options.
Services are provided or supervised by our highly experienced, board-certified dermatologists. With over 25 years experience, our “Award Winning Cosmetic Surgeon” Dr. Robert Strimling, MD is one of the most experienced cosmetic dermatologists in Las Vegas. Our dermatologists have been selected or voted “Best Dermatologists” in Las Vegas and nationally many times.
From Las Vegas or out-of-town, our patients come from all walks of life. Other physicians, CEOs, celebrities, politicians and others have sought our services.
All patients are welcome, including those without insurance. Medicare and most insurances are accepted.
We are appreciative and grateful for all our patients who entrust us with their care. Thank you!
Contact us at or text or call (702) 243-6400 to schedule your personalized consultation.