Skin cancer is curable when treated early. Malignant melanomas have the ability to spread to other organs more rapidly than other skin cancers. What are the signs to look out for?
Skin Cancer Foundation explains that malignant melanomas begin in cells known as melanocytes.
Melanocytes are skin cells found in the upper layer of skin, which produce the pigment melanin.
And melanin is what gives somebody their skin colour.
A – Asymmetry
Look at any lesions on the body and see if it is asymmetrical.
This means the two halves of the lesion won’t look the same or identical.
B – Border
Melanoma borders tend to have scalloped or uneven edges.
C – Colour
Different shades of brown, tan or black seen in one mole is a warning sign.
D – Diameter
Any lesion 6mm in diameter or larger needs to be examined.
E – Evolving
Any change in size, shape, colour or elevation of a spot on the skin, or any bleeding, itching or crusting, needs to be checked out.
A referral to see a dermatologist can be made by your GP.
The expensive, but more timely, option is to see a dermatologist privately.
Should symptoms of melanoma be suspected by the specialist, the mole will be removed – an excision biopsy.
The specialist will also check the lymph nodes closest to the mole to see if they look or feel swollen.
Results will confirm if there is melanoma or not, and further tests will determine the stage of the cancer.
From there, treatment can begin. Surgery is usually the main treatment for melanoma.
Published at Sun, 10 May 2020 15:59:00 +0000