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Seborrheic keratosis

  • Alternative Names

    Benign skin tumors - keratosis; Keratosis - seborrheic; Senile keratosis


    Treatment is usually not needed unless the growths become irritated or are unsightly.

    If treatment is needed, growths may be removed with surgery or freezing (cryotherapy).

    Support Groups

    Expectations (prognosis)

    Removing the growths is simple and usually does not cause scars. However, growths on the trunk often leave the skin lighter colored.

    Growths usually do not return after they are removed. However, people who tend to get this condition may develop more growths in the future.

    • Irritation, bleeding, or discomfort of growths
    • Misdiagnosis (it may be difficult to tell apart from cancerous melanoma in some cases)
    • Psychological distress from change in appearance

    Calling your health care provider

    Call for an appointment with your health care provider if you have symptoms of seborrheic keratosis.

    Also call if you develop new symptoms, including:

    • A change in the appearance of the skin growth
    • New growths
    • A growth that looks like a seborrheic keratosis, but it is the only growth or the growth has irregular borders and color. Your health care provider will need to determine whether the growth is melanoma.