What are the Warning Signs of Skin Cancer
1. Changing moles.
Your moles can play a key role in helping you stay on top of your skin health, as any mole changes are often warning signs of skin cancer.
The biggest mole changes to look out for include:
- Changes in size
- Changes in color
- Changes in shape
- Growth in size
- Crusting, erosions or changes in texture
Impact Melanoma has a great collection of resources to help you learn more about what to look out for with your moles.
2. New growths.
If you notice any new growths on your skin, this could be a sign that you need to get your skin checked by a board certified dermatologist. These new growths could include:
- New brown lesions that are irregular in shape or color (if you notice these, schedule an immediate appointment, as this could be a worrying sign of melanoma)
- Pink shiny lesions (this could be a symptom of Basal Cell Cancer)
- Scaly or tender lesions (this could be a sign of Squamous Cell Cancer)
If you have any new or changing lesions please see a board certified dermatologist as soon as possible. They can evaluate your skin lesions and determine whether they are suspicious, and require a biopsy or other removal, or are benign such as an age spot or innocent mole.
When skin cancers are identified early they can be safely removed and will no longer cause you any risk. However when identified later, particularly Melanoma and Squamous Cell Cancer can be deadly.
If you’ve had cancerous lesions in the past, it’s important to stay on top of your skin cancer checks, as these skin cancers tend to frequently recur. If you’ve had skin cancer before, schedule a skin cancer check every six months to one year to stay on top of new or changing lesions.