Moles and Melanoma

benign nevusMost moles are harmless. Changes in a mole’s size, shape, or color may be a sign that melanoma is developing. A normal mole is usually an evenly colored dark to light brown or tan spot on the skin. It can be either flat or raised. It can be round or oval. Moles are generally less than ¼ of an inch across. A mole can be present at birth, or appear during life. Moles can fade away in later years. New moles that appear after age 30 should be checked by a doctor.

Melanoma is the most dangerous type of skin Cancer. The most important warning sign for melanoma is a new spot on the skin or a spot that’s changing in size, shape, or color. Another important sign is a spot that looks different from all of the other spots on your skin. The ABCDE rule is another guide to the usual signs of melanoma. Some melanomas do not fit the rules described above, so it’s important to tell your doctor about any changes or new spots on the skin, or growths that look different from the rest of your moles.