Reliable medical information is not hard to come by these days provided you know where to look. Since I encountered so many websites that post skin tags pictures that are not accurate (they simply copy the image from another source and use it in their articles to describe genital warts, naevi – moles or even more serious skin lesions like melanoma) I decided to create this skin image gallery composed of quality pictures taken from various patients (with consent obviously). Hopefully, this way I be able to remove any doubts regarding how exactly skin tags look like with the use of actual in-clinic pictures. All the skin tag pictures I will list below are taken with the consent of my patients and do not include distinctive patterns for obvious privacy reasons.
Under each picture you will find a small description of the image, as well as certain clinical data that I consider to be relevant to the case. After seeing a few images I would be more than happy if some of you will be able to spot the patterns and identify their problem.
These kind of lesions come in a wide variety of shapes, colors and sizes before taking a look at the skin tags pictures you should be aware of some facts:
- The size: skin polyps can range greatly in size from 1mm to giant ones that can measure even 5-10 cm (big ones are rare but still worth mentioning)
- The shape: while most are pedunculated (they have a skin implantation base), skin tags can be also punctiform (small – resembling a dot) or flat. The large ones mentioned above are in all cases pedunculated.
- The colors: most skin tags match the patient’s skin color while others can be black (usually the small ones around the neck or thrombosed ones), or feature pigment deposits (brown entirely or mixed brown dots).
Because to an untrained eye such as the average reader, skin tags can resemble other lesions, it is always a good idea to contact your health care provider in case the criteria described above to not match. It should definitely schedule an appointment with a dermatologist or surgeon in case you notice one of the following criteria:
- Flat lesions that do not elevate above the skin surface which display multiple colors, irregular borders, history of change (be it growth or regression)
- Nodular lesions on the face or body that are pigmented, bleeding or form crusts on their surfaces.
- Lesions that do not heal, bleed or tend to heal then ulcerate again.
- Any other skin with rapid onset that change. itch or cause pain.
Skin Tags Pictures Gallery
Small round-oval skin tag (4mm) with pigment deposit located in the center located on the posterior thorax (back). The red lesion in the upper left corner of the image is not a skin tag.
Image of large thrombosed skin tag located on the back of a elderly patient. Notice the the implantation based which is slightly inflamed and the dark blue color. Due to twisting the lesion was cut from its blood supply. The skin tag was cut at the base with the electrocautery unit. Without treatment it would have indeed detached itself within a variable time frame but with higher secondary infection risk.
Image of a medium skin (tag 5mm) matching normal skin color located on the upper back of a female patient. According to the patient the skin polyp growed slowly over the course of four years. Although small, notice the implantation base which is the same size as the lesion itself. Patient allergic to lidocaine (numbing) thus she was advised to ligate skin tag at home.
Image of multiple neck skin tags from a 35 year old patient wearing a gold necklace. Notice the distribution pattern that follows the friction zone with the necklace. Patient was advised to reduce friction in that zone and the skin tags were removed by himself at home using micro TagBands.
Image of a skin tag measuring around 4mm located in the armpit region of a middle aged male patient with color that matches the normal skin.