Dermatology Community
53.6k Members
Avatar universal

Impact of sunscreen on developing new moles

Im hoping you can help me.
I have recently experienced a marked increase in the number of moles, freckles and other skin blemishes I have.
Im in my late twenties and up until 25 I had probably only accumulated 20 or so moles in my entire life where as in the last couple of years alone I have probably developed double this number (40ish) more. I have not been exposed to any more sun than usual recently.  Proceeding  this increase I undertook a course of isotretinoin for acne and then had some mild scarring resurfaced using a laser. Knowing this would leave my skin sensitive to the sun I took to using sunscreen. It could just be a coincidence but I cannot help but be suspicious that either the isotretinoin or the suncreen  is associated with the surge in new moles.
In the past I would have assumed that sunscreen would reduce the formation of new moles but I have seen a number of items online which question whether there is a correlation between sunscreen use and an increase in the number of nevi eg (Bigby at the archives of dermatology) (Wikipedia's page on sunscreen controversy focuses on melanoma but may suggest mechanisms by which it could increase moles)
What is the current official advice from doctors concerning whether sunscreen increases or decreases the number of new moles someone will acquire?  And if isotretinoin or suncreen are not responsible for the increase do you have any ideas what might be?
Thank you for any information or advice you can provide
3 Responses
563773 tn?1374250139
The effect of sunscreen on the development of nevi and melanotic nevi which can potentially turn into melanomas is not properly understood and needs to be investigated. It has been reported in the oxford journals also.

I sincerely hope that helps. Take care and regards.
Avatar universal
thankyou very much for your response and for the reference to the oxford journals they have provided some interesting reading.
I guess until there is a more definative conclusions the only sensible thing I can do is to add elements of sun avoidance (within reason dont want to avoid to such an extent I get a vitamin D problem) and wearing more protective clothing to continued sunscreen use where neither of the previous 2 options is sufficient.
Any other comments are also welcome but thankyou once again for your reply it was most helpful.
563773 tn?1374250139
Thank you for yoour kind words. I am glad i could be of help. Take care and regards.
Have an Answer?
Top Dermatology Answerers
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Learn to identify and prevent bites from summer’s most common pests.
Doctors argue for legislation to curb this dangerous teen trend in the latest Missouri Medicine report.
10 ways to keep your skin healthy all winter long
How to get rid of lumpy fat on your arms, hips, thighs and bottom
Diet “do’s” and “don’ts” for healthy, radiant skin.
Images of rashes caused by common skin conditions