Minor Surgery

BVM offers a limited minor surgery service. This is only for adults (16 and
over) and only if certain criteria are met.

Indications for in-house minor surgery:

  1. Diagnostic uncertainty (but not suspected malignant lesions – see below). This includes punch biopsy of rashes if this helps in diagnosis.
  2. Skin lesions that persistently or recurrently bleed.
  3. Skin lesions that are causing significant pain or functional impairment.

We do not offer a cosmetic surgery service. Requests for removal of a skin lesion for cosmetic reasons will be declined and we would suggest you go privately to have this done.

All requests for minor surgery need to be made through one of our BVM clinicians. The request will then be reviewed by a member of the Minor Ops Team who may decide that minor surgery is not appropriate.

As with any skin procedure there is a risk of scarring and complications, although highly trained, our BVM minor surgery operators are not cosmetic surgeons.


  1. Patients with suspected malignant lesions  will be referred to hospital and not seen in our minor surgery service.
  2. We do not perform minor surgery on children (aged under 16).
  3. We do not generally remove lesions on the face that require cutting treatment (we may consider curette of seborrhoiec warts or cautery of small skin tags if risk of scarring is minimal and other criteria are met and agreed by one of our minor surgery team)


Private skin surgery

The minor surgery service operated by GP care offers removal of simple skin lesions for a set fee. Details of costs and a patient leaflet is available on their website:

Minor Surgery - GP Care

There are also other private providers available.


NHS referral for Benign skin lesions

The NHS does not accept referral for benign skin lesions unless certain criteria have been met and funding approval has been obtained.


Advice on specific skin lesions:

  • Epidermoid (Sebaceous) cysts
    Epidermoid cysts are common and usually harmless so do not generally need removal. If they recurrently discharge or have been infected on at least one occasion then they can be removed
    (although we will not remove while acutely infected).
  • Pilar cysts on the scalp
    Pilar cysts on the scalp are usually harmless and do not need removal. If they are causing significant functional impairment then they can be removed.
  • Seborrhoeic warts
    Seborrhoiec warts are common and harmless. If they are recurrently catching or bleeding they can be removed.
  • Skin tags
    Skin tags are common and harmless. They occasionally catch but this alone does not meet criteria for the BVM minor surgery service so generally referrals will not be accepted unless they fulfil our criteria.
  • Warts and Verrucae
    Warts and Verrucae are common and harmless and difficult to treat. They can be treated with liquid nitrogen but we do not offer this service at BVM. Self care and OTC treatments (see link) are available or otherwise patients will need to access private treatment.
  • In-grown Toe Nails
    We do not offer treatment or removal of in-grown toe nails and advise you access a private chiropody service. If an in-grown toe nail is recurrently infected then please talk to your doctor.
  • Lipomas
    Lipomas are common and benign and usually asymptomatic. We do not generally remove them unless other criteria are met.
  • Keloid Scars
    Keloid scars cannot be removed for cosmetic reasons but early injection of a rapidly growing keloid scar can be considered.