A change in your skin is the most common sign of skin cancer. This could be a new growth, a sore that doesn’t heal, or a change in a mole. Not all skin cancers look the same.
For melanoma specifically, a simple way to remember the warning signs is to remember the A-B-C-D-Es of melanoma.
A. Asymmetry – Melanoma is often asymmetrical, which means the shape isn’t uniform. Non-cancerous moles are typically uniform and symmetrical in shape.
B. Border – Melanoma often has borders that aren’t well defined or are irregular in shape, whereas non-cancerous moles usually have smooth, well-defined borders.
C. Color – Melanoma lesions are often more than one color or shade. Moles that are benign are typically one color.
D. Diameter – Melanoma growths are normally larger than 6mm in diameter, which is about the diameter of a standard pencil.
E. Evolution – Melanoma will often change characteristics, such as size, shape or color. Unlike most benign moles, melanoma tends to change over time. If you have a mole or skin growth, watch it for signs of changes. If you notice any of the ABCDEs of melanoma, make an appointment right away to be evaluated by Dr. Monique S. Cohn, DO FAOCD.
At Advanced Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery Center, we recommend doing regular skin checks at home to look for changes in your skin. Call it an ABCDE assessment. If you notice any of the signs and symptoms of melanoma or you have a suspicious mole or lesion, schedule an appointment. You may want to schedule annual skin checks as well so you can catch skin cancer before it becomes life threatening.
Skin cancer is common, and when it’s caught early, most skin cancer – including melanoma – can be cured. If you have a mole or notice changes in your skin such as a new growth, a sore that doesn’t heal, schedule an appointment on-line or call 330-425-7600 at our Twinsburg office for a consultation with Dr. Monique S. Cohn.