Skin Tag

What does a skin tag look like under a microscope?

Laboratory preparation of the tissue is required before looking at the skin tag under the microscope. The skin is stained with a stain called hematoxylin and eosin ("H&E"). Under the microscope, there is a layer of colored polypoid tissue attached to a small stalk. The purple outer layer, epidermis, is composed mostly of living epithelial cells which overlay a pink core of fibrous collagenous tissue (dermis) and without other skin structures. Most skin tags are not submitted for routine pathological examination unless the physician is suspicious that it may represent a more serious problem. Some common skin conditions that can mimic skin tags include seborrheic keratoses, moles, warts, cysts, milia, neurofibromas, and nevus lipomatosus. Rarely, skin cancers like basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and malignant melanoma may mimic skin tags.

Reviewed on 1/28/2015
Skin Pictures Slideshow: Adult Skin Problems


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