Home surgery is not a good solution for removing skin tags
DEAR DR. ROACH: What is the best way to eliminate skin tags? Is there an over-thecounter item that will work effectively? There are many products that claim to remove them, but most don’t. -- G.L.
ANSWER: Skin tags (acrochordons) are benign but unsightly outgrowths of normal skin usually found in places where the skin rubs against itself, such as in the groin or axilla (underarm).
They don’t need to be removed if they aren’t bothering you. If you want to remove them for cosmetic reasons, the best way to remove them is to see your doctor or dermatologist to get it done definitively. I usually use a scalpel blade (I use anesthetic), but they can be removed with liquid nitrogen or with a surgical electrodessicator.
I’m not convinced that any of the over-the-counter creams or oils are very effective. I don’t recommend attempting home surgery, because skin tags can bleed and occasionally need a stitch. Also, clean instruments and proper technique are essential for a good result and to prevent infection.