Seborrheic keratoses are harmless common skin growths. They occur during adult life and may gradually increase in number. While the cause is unknown, they may be due to irritation of the skin. They should not be confused with actinic keratosis or age spots. If you are not sure which type you have, ask your dermatologist, who can usually differentiate between the two without a biopsy. In unusual cases, a shave biopsy may be necessary to rule out a skin cancer. Sometimes a seborrheic keratosis is mistaken for a wart. They can be flat or raised, rough or smooth and almost any color: white, brown, black. They can become red, irritated and even bleed from sun exposure, trauma or exposure to harsh soaps or chemicals. Removal for cosmetic reasons is not usually covered by insurance companies.