Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center - Health Library

Acrochordons

(Skin Tags; Fibroepithelial Polyps)

Definition

Acrochordons are harmless skin growths that hang off the skin. They are more also known as skin tags.

Acrochordons
hanging skin tag

Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

Causes ^

Skin tags are collagen fibers and blood vessels that are surrounded by a thin layer of skin. It is not clear what causes them.

Risk Factors ^

Factors that raise your risk of getting skin tags are:

Symptoms ^

Skin tags appear as flesh-colored skin growths. They are small, but can range in size from 1 millimeter to 5 centimeters. They are often found in folds of the skin, such as the arm pit, neck, or groin. They don't cause symptoms, even after they appear.

Diagnosis ^

You will be asked about your symptoms and health history. A physical exam will be done. Most skin tags can be diagnosed without tests. In some cases, a skin biopsy may be needed to rule out other problems.

Treatment ^

Most of the time, no treatment is needed. Skin tags can be watched. The skin tags should be removed if they are bothering you.

Removal options include the following:

  • Cryosurgery
  • Surgical removal
  • Electrosurgery
  • Ligation

Prevention ^

Skin tags can't be prevented.

RESOURCES:

American Academy of Dermatology
http://www.aad.org

American Society for Dermatologic Surgery
http://www.asds.net

CANADIAN RESOURCES:

Canadian Dermatology Association
http://www.dermatology.ca

Dermatologists.ca
http://www.dermatologists.ca

REFERENCES:

Common benign skin lesions. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website.Available at:http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T908545/Common-benign-skin-lesions. Updated February 5, 2018. Accessed July 16, 2018.

Skin tags. Merck Manual Professional Version website. Available at: http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/dermatologic_disorders/benign_skin_tumors_growths_and_vascular_lesions/skin_tags.html?qt=&sc=&alt=. Updated January 2018. Accessed July 16, 2018.

Skin tags. New Zealand Dermatological Society website. Available at: http://www.dermnetnz.org/lesions/skin-tags.html. Accessed July 16, 2018.

Last reviewed June 2018 by James Cornell, MD  Last Updated: 7/18/18