Melanoma is a very serious form of skin cancer that develops on the skin because of too much sun. We rarely think of our feet getting too much sun, but they can and often do. Most people never check their feet for signs of melanoma which makes it even more dangerous because it often spreads before it’s ever noticed.
By checking your feet, you can find it early when it’s still treatable. Check the entire bottom of each foot, including the bottom, top, sides and between your toes. If you have ever had an injury on your feet, even if it was years ago, examine that area a little closer. Research has shown that a foot injury increases your risk of developing melanoma.
When skin cancer develops on a foot, you may see lesions that appear as dark brown, black or multi-colored growths. It’s important to know your spots, but it’s also possible for melanoma to have different features.
Melanoma often appears like a changing mole, but on the foot may also look like a:
- Brown or black vertical line under a toenail
- Pinkish-red spot or growth
- New spot or growth where you injured your foot
- Rapidly growing mass on your foot, especially where you once injured your foot
- Non-healing sore on your foot (or a sore that heals and returns)
- Sore that looks like a diabetic ulcer
Sometimes, melanoma on the foot feels painful, bleeds, or itches, but not always. The bleeding tends to stop and start.
If you are due for your yearly full body skin exam or you notice something on your foot that just doesn’t look right, contact Advanced Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery Center right away by calling 330-425-7600 to set up an appointment in Twinsburg.