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Skin Tags: Where They Come From and Are They Harmful?

For a plastic surgeon who has been in the business for as long as Myron Tannenbaum, there are no surprises anymore. Each day a patient may walk in and declare that they have been living with a particular bodily feature that they want shaped, sliced, set, scraped, and supplemented. This is nothing new; people look in the mirror, unhappy about the natural structure of their nose or their receding hairline, and they come to the experts. Between Botox, breasts, and bunions, plastic surgery in Miami is booming, and yet there is one physical feature that is usually always a surprise for patients upon discovery, but constitutes one of the simplest procedures for an experienced Miami facial plastic surgeon: skin tags﹘specifically, skin tags around the mouth, ears, and eyelids.

What Are Skin Tags?

Unlike a goiter﹘which is a swelling of the thyroid gland that can cause distressed breathing﹘or any dermatological manifestation of a malignant inner problem like basal cell carcinoma, a skin tag is merely a growth on the body that can resemble anything from a subcutaneous grain of rice to a hanging ‘droplet” of skin. Some facts about skin tags:

  • They are noncancerous. If you discover a skin tag, it is not something that requires a biopsy or any close monitoring; a dermatologist will help you know if it is anything more than a tag. In fact, skin tags are often removed purely for aesthetic purposes.

  • They typically occur in the folds of the body: Skin tags most often occur in places like the armpits, groin, and neck. Miami facial plastic surgeons report removing numerous skin tags from areas around the eyelids as well.

  • They are no respecter of persons. While doctors have found that skin tags generally affect women more than men (a result that may occur due to the propensity of skin tags to form under the bustline), they are common to all types of people and skin types.

Skin tags shouldn’t be thought of as more than mild annoyances or unattractive blemishes. However, for many who get them around the folds of the eyelids, they are sources of concern. Will they somehow affect the sensitive skin around the eye in an adverse way? Will they affect the individual’s eyesight? Is it possible to even remove them, since they can be quite impacted by wrinkles and a scalpel near the eye isn’t an ideal scenario?

Skin Tags and Eyelid Plastic Surgery

While the aforementioned questions may come from a place of genuine concern, facial plastic surgeons like those in Miami can happily report that skin tags have no adverse effects on either the eyesight or the surrounding skin. Luckily too, the procedure to get rid of them is an easy one. Usually, eyelid plastic surgery of this kind involves freezing the tag off or making a small incision into the connective tissue to shave it off. 

It is important to remember that despite the number of home remedies available on the internet, speaking to a licensed plastic surgeon is best, especially when considering making changes to your body in any way.