How do you tell if a mole is benign or malignant?

How can you tell the difference between a benign and malignant mole?

Melanoma lesions are often irregular, or not symmetrical, in shape. A non-cancerous mole is typically symmetrical in shape. If you were to draw a line through the middle of a mole, the two halves should roughly match. Typically a non-cancerous mole will have smooth, even borders.

What does a mole look like if it is cancerous?

A cancerous mole will have edges that look ragged, notched or blurred. Uneven color: A normal mole will have a single shade of brown that is evenly distributed throughout. A cancerous mole will have shades or hues of black and brown. In between, areas of red, pink, white, gray or blue may also be seen.

Can a doctor tell if a mole is cancerous just by looking at it?

Unfortunately, you can’t tell by looking at a mole whether it’s cancerous or what type it is. It could very well be a normal skin spot with an abnormal appearance. A dermatologist can’t always tell the difference either.

What do early cancerous moles look like?

Border – melanomas usually have a notched or ragged border. Colours – melanomas will usually be a mix of 2 or more colours. Diameter – most melanomas are usually larger than 6mm in diameter. Enlargement or elevation – a mole that changes size over time is more likely to be a melanoma.

THIS IS IMPORTANT:  Best answer: How do I get instant relief from eczema?

When should I be worried about a mole?

If you have any moles that are larger than most, have smudgy or irregular edges, are uneven in colour or have some pinkness, you should see a doctor and get them checked. Any moles that appear newly in adulthood should be checked. The most concerning sign, however, is a changing mole.

What do suspicious moles look like?

Border that is irregular: The edges of suspicious moles are ragged, notched or blurred in outline, while healthy moles tend to have more even borders. The pigment of the mole may also spread into the surrounding skin. Color that is uneven: The mole may have various colors present, including black, brown and tan.

What does Stage 1 melanoma look like?

Stage I melanoma is no more than 1.0 millimeter thick (about the size of a sharpened pencil point), with or without an ulceration (broken skin). There is no evidence that Stage I melanoma has spread to the lymph tissues, lymph nodes, or body organs.

How quickly can a mole turn cancerous?

Melanoma can grow very quickly. It can become life-threatening in as little as 6 weeks and, if untreated, it can spread to other parts of the body.

Is a melanoma raised or flat?

The most common type of melanoma usually appears as a flat or barely raised lesion with irregular edges and different colours. Fifty per cent of these melanomas occur in preexisting moles.

How do I know if my mole is bad?

It’s important to get a new or existing mole checked out if it:

  • changes shape or looks uneven.
  • changes colour, gets darker or has more than 2 colours.
  • starts itching, crusting, flaking or bleeding.
  • gets larger or more raised from the skin.
THIS IS IMPORTANT:  Can tanning beds cause eczema?

What does Stage 1 melanoma mean?

In Stage I melanoma, the cancer cells are in both the first and second layers of the skin—the epidermis and the dermis. A melanoma tumor is considered Stage I if it is up to 2 mm thick, and it may or may not have ulceration. There is no evidence the cancer has spread to lymph nodes or distant sites (metastasis).

What color are cancerous moles?

Malignant melanoma, which starts out as a mole, is the most dangerous form of skin cancer, killing almost 10,000 people each year. The majority of melanomas are black or brown, but they can be almost any color; skin-colored, pink, red, purple, blue or white. Melanomas are caused mainly by intense UV exposure.