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What Causes Growths on the Skin?

There are several types of benign growths that occur on the body that amount to nothing more than cosmetic nuisances. For example, seborrheic keratoses are common, rough and waxy growths that typically affect older adults. These spots may resemble skin cancer, but in fact are harmless and usually painless, unless jewelry or clothing irritate them. The cause of seborrheic keratoses is unknown, although the propensity to develop them often runs in families. Unlike many skin ailments, there seems to be no connection with sun exposure.

Dermatosis papulosa nigra, or DPNs, are raised or flat dark spots that often occur in clusters on the face and/or neck and often resemble moles or skin tags. They have no known cause and, typically, very little medical impact. While DPNs can occur on any skin type, they are most common in patients with darker complexions.

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