Skin Cancer/Melanoma

The ABCDE’s of Skin Cancer/Melanoma

Everyone has some risk factors for skin cancer/melanoma, and skin self-checks should be a regular part of your overall wellness routine (in addition to Full Skin Surveys done by a medical professional).  In order to know what you are looking for though, it is important that you are familiar with the ABCDE’s of Skin Cancer/Melanoma.

If you notice any warning signs, we strongly recommend that you contact your dermatologist and schedule an appointment for evaluation.

A – Asymmetry

A SymmetryIf you draw a line through the middle, the two halves do not match. This is a warning sign for Melanoma.


B – Border

B BorderA benign mole has smooth, even borders, while the borders of a malignant melanoma tend to be uneven.



C – Color

C ColorA mole that is a variety of colors is another melanoma warning sign.  A number of different shades of brown, tan or black could appear. A melanoma may also become red, white or blue.


D – Diameter

D DiameterBenign moles usually have a smaller diameter than malignant ones. Melanomas usually are larger in diameter than the eraser on your pencil tip (¼ inch or 6mm); however 1/3 are smaller when first detected.


E – Evolving

E EvolvingBe on the alert when a mole starts to evolve or change in any way. When a mole is evolving, see a doctor. Any change — in size, shape, color, elevation, or another trait, or any new symptom such as bleeding, itching or crusting — points to danger.


Naples Dermatology of SW Florida