ZocdocAnswersWhat kind of a doctor should I see about an unsightly brown spot on my leg?

Question

What kind of a doctor should I see about an unsightly brown spot on my leg?

In high school I had an in grown hair that has turned into a almost freckle and almost mole like object on my lower thigh. It has never changed in size or color and is not at all painful. I just want to know if it is a hurtful thing and what it would take to resolve it.

Answer

This is an interesting question, and one that will probably be able to be answered quickly by a dermatologist in their office once they are able to take a look at the spot on your leg and examine you. There really is no substitute for a thorough physical exam when it comes to dermatology. They will of course take an in depth history as well looking at things like previous sun exposure, whether you wore sun block or not, whether you have had skin lesions taken off in the past, a history of cancers in yourself, family history of cancers, etc. From what you have described on your leg, it is hard for me to tell exactly how big it is, the exact shape, whether it is flush with the surrounding skin, etc. When it comes to dermatologic lesions, there is a very general pneumonic that some physicians use to describe and characterize the lesion. It is called the "ABC's" or dermatology. (But it's really ABCDE). The "A" stands for Asymmetry (meaning that uneven lesions are more worrisome). B stands for Border irregularity. C stands for Color (an irregular color within a lesion may be a sign that there is a malignant process). D stands for Diameter, and basically this is saying that anything that is large, and continuing to grow should be checked out. E stands for Evolution or change (rapid color, size, texture change should be checked out). While none of these things can tell a physician for sure if a cancer is present, then can give light to whether or not things should be biopsied (which is the only way to pathologically diagnose whether something is benign or malignant). I hope this helps. Best of luck.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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