Abnormal skin growths are very common and we can offer you both surgical and non-surgical treatment of these.

Our surgeons at Wellington Plastic Surgery Institute are Affiliated Providers to Southern Cross Health Society for skin lesion and skin cancer surgery under both local and general anaesthetic.

There are two main types of skin lesion (growth):

  • benign (non-cancerous) growths such as moles, cysts, warts, and skin tags
  • malignant (cancerous) growths such as carcinomas and melanomas

Benign growths

Moles, cysts, warts, and skin tags can be unsightly or cause you discomfort when they are knocked or rubbed. You can have them surgically removed to stop them growing or causing discomfort or to improve your appearance.

Malignant growths

Basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas are generally slow growing and unlikely to spread to other parts of the body. They can however invade the tissues around them, causing pain and bleeding, and can be unsightly. Rarely squamous cell cancers can spread to other parts of the body including lymph nodes

Melanoma is a serious skin cancer that can spread to other parts of the body and if advanced can be a threat to your life. You need to have melanomas removed urgently.

The operation

You can have most surgery for skin growths with a local anaesthetic often following immediately on from your consultation. If the problem is large, or there is need for more complicated surgery a general anaesthetic may be recommended. This would normally be as a day procedure.

After the operation

Most of these operation can be performed as day procedures. You may need to take a few days off work after the surgery and it is likely you will be advised not to exercise for at least a week following your surgery.

Your specialist will let you know what to expect when you discuss your operation at your consultation.


At your consultation all the potential options for managing your skin growths will be discussed including both surgical and non-surgical options if appropriate.

Most skin growths can be removed with simple operations but sometime skin grafts or moving local skin around (flaps) may be necessary – your surgeon will discuss the plans with you at your consultation.


The outcome for you is the removal of the skin cancer or growth, with the best possible scar. All skin surgery will leave scars, although we take as much care as we can to place these in "hidden" areas or natural skin creases.


As with all surgery, complications are always a possibility. Your specialist will inform you fully at your consultation of any complications.