You irritated a mole, perhaps with clothing or scratching over it without realizing it, and it now hurts; does this mean cancer even though it looks normal?

Common moles can get irritated in everyday life. Depending on their location, they can get irritated by being rubbed against by clothing.

For example a bra strap can irritate the same mole on a daily basis.

The result can be an obvious hurting or soreness coming from the mole.

Some people are worried that the degree of this is either predictive of future cancer or melanoma, or that it means that the cancer is already present (though not visible to the naked eye).

Can a perfectly normal mole still hurt if it gets irritated?
“Even a normal mole can hurt if it is irritated,” says Dr. Janet Prystowsky, MD, who’s a board certified dermatologist in New York, NY, with 30+ years’ experience.

“Any skin that is irritated can hurt. However, a mole that appears more irritated than your other moles might be a sign of concern,” especially if there’s no recent history of that mole getting rubbed against by clothing or being scratched over.

Dr. Prystowsky adds, “Also, a chronically traumatized mole increases its risk of becoming a skin cancer. Contact your dermatologist if you are concerned. A biopsy will tell you whether your mole is benign or a skin cancer [melanoma].”

dr. prystowsky

In combination with her focus on early skin cancer detection and removal, Dr. Prystowsky provides a wide range of revitalizing and rejuvenating treatments.