It is the most serious form of skin cancer. Melanomas may appear on the skin suddenly without warning but also can develop on an existing mole.
If you notice a mole on your skin, you should follow the simple ABCDE rule, which outlines the warning signs of melanoma:
- Asymmetry: One half does not match the other half.
- Border irregularity: The edges are ragged, notched or blurred.
- Color: The pigmentation is not uniform. Different shades of tan, brown or black are often present. Dashes of red, white, and blue can add to the mottled appearance.
- Diameter: While melanomas are usually greater than 6mm in diameter when diagnosed, they can be smaller.
- Evolving: A mole or skin lesion that looks different from the rest or is changing in size, shape or color.