Birth Marks

Birthmarks may be made of either vessels or pigmented cells.  They are not always visible at birth.  Moles that are bigger than a half inch are called congenital nevi or moles and should be watched for change.  Not all change is bad but a physician should be familiar with a congenital mole and be able to analyze a change that occurs in it. 

Birthmarks made from vessels (usually reddish or bluish) seldom cause problems unless they grow rapidly in an infant.  They can often be treated with a laser if they are unattractive. Some pigmented marks are not moles and show up when a child is young.  These pigmentary alterations are seldom a problem and the pediatrician will watch them for change.  One common type of birthmark in this category is a Cafe au Lait macule.

For more information, visit www.mayoclinic.com