Is my mole dangerous?

The vast majority of moles are not dangerous. Moles that are more likely to be cancer are those that look different than other existing moles or those that first appear after age 25. If you notice changes in a mole’s color, height, size, or shape, you should have a dermatologist (skin doctor) evaluate it.

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.

What does a cancerous mole look like?

Melanoma borders tend to be uneven and may have scalloped or notched edges, while common moles tend to have smoother, more even borders. C is for Color. Multiple colors are a warning sign. While benign moles are usually a single shade of brown, a melanoma may have different shades of brown, tan or black.

When should you worry 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.

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How can you tell if a mole is suspicious or dangerous?

Changes in the shape, texture or height of moles may be signs of danger too. A mole that is asymmetric and/​or has uneven edges can be a sign of melanoma. It may feel bumpy and/​or rough to the touch – or you may feel a hard lump. A lump doesn’t have to be big for the growth to be dangerous.

What makes a mole suspicious?

A mole that does not have the same color throughout or that has shades of tan, brown, black, blue, white, or red is suspicious. Normal moles are usually a single shade of color. A mole of many shades or that has lightened or darkened should be checked by a doctor.

What happens if you accidentally scratch off a mole?

What happens if you accidentally scratch off a mole? Accidentally scratching off a mole is likely to cause bleeding and damage the under layer of the skin, resulting in the skin vessels becoming prone to injury.

Is a melanoma raised or flat?

Usually melanomas develop in or around an existing mole. Signs and symptoms of melanoma vary depending on the exact type and may include: A flat or slightly raised, discolored patch with irregular borders and possible areas of tan, brown, black, red, blue or white (superficial spreading melanoma)

What skin cancer looks like when it starts?

Melanoma signs include: A large brownish spot with darker speckles. A mole that changes in color, size or feel or that bleeds. A small lesion with an irregular border and portions that appear red, pink, white, blue or blue-black.

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Does a cancerous mole hurt?

Also, when melanoma develops in an existing mole, the texture of the mole may change and become hard or lumpy. The skin lesion may feel different and may itch, ooze, or bleed, but a melanoma skin lesion usually does not cause pain.

Why is my mole getting bigger?

Healthy moles do not change in size, shape or color. If you notice a mole is getting bigger, changing shapes or getting darker than normal, this could be a sign of a malignant mole.

Can moles be squishy?

For example, normal moles in children often become more elevated and soft (“squishy”) slowly over time. Any sudden development of a firm bump would be worrisome. In addition, a new symptom such as bleeding, itching, or crusting should prompt evaluation.

How long can a cancerous mole go undetected?

For example, certain types of skin cancer can be diagnosed initially just by visual inspection — though a biopsy is necessary to confirm the diagnosis. But other cancers can form and grow undetected for 10 years or more, as one study found, making diagnosis and treatment that much more difficult.

Are cancerous moles hard or soft?

Also, when melanoma develops in an existing mole, the texture of the mole may change and become hard, lumpy, or scaly. Although the skin may feel different and may itch, ooze, or bleed, melanoma usually does not cause pain.

What does the start of melanoma look like?

Often the first sign of melanoma is a change in the shape, color, size, or feel of an existing mole. However, melanoma may also appear as a new mole. People should tell their doctor if they notice any changes on the skin. The only way to diagnose melanoma is to remove tissue and check it for cancer cells.

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