Melanoma Warning Signs - the ABCDEs: Melanoma is a type of skin cancer that develops in melanocytes. These cells produce the pigment melanin that colors the skin, hair and eyes. Melanoma is typically found on moles on the skin produced by melanocytes. Dermatologists can help determine if a mole is malignant melanoma. The ABCDEs of melanoma are signs used to assess a mole. Consult with a doctor if your moles or pigmented spots exhibit:
Melanoma Warning Signs - the ABCDEs: (A)symmetry
The mole is or melanoma lesions are often irregular, or not symmetrical, in shape. Benign moles are usually symmetrical.
Melanoma Warning Signs - the ABCDEs: (B)order
Melanoma lesions usually have jagged, scalloped, or poorly borders that are difficult to define. Typically, non-cancerous moles have smooth, even borders.
Melanoma Warning Signs - the ABCDEs: (C)olor
The color (pigmentation) is not uniform. The presence of more than one color (blue, black, brown, tan, red) or the uneven distribution of color can sometimes be a warning sign of melanoma. Benign moles are usually a single shade of brown or tan.
Melanoma Warning Signs - the ABCDEs: (D)iameter
The size of melanoma is greater than 1/4 inch (6 mm) in diameter. Any growth of a mole should be evaluated.
Melanoma Warning Signs - the ABCDEs: (E)volution
A mole or skin lesion can change (evolve) and develop symptoms, such as itching, burning, scaling, or bleeding. Anything that makes the mole feel or look funny should be evaluated.