Nevi (moles) are pigmented lesions on our skin that can present as pink, brown, or skin-colored lesions. They can be flat or raised lesions. Moles can be present at birth or appear in childhood. They can increase during young adulthood. Moles can change size and shape overtime. While majority of skin cancers are new lesions, a changing mole may be a sign of early skin cancer. Therefore, we recommend a self-skin check at a regular interval.
When examining existing marks for potential melanoma, please follow
the ABCDE of checking moles.
A is asymmetry – look for moles whose size, shape, or color vary from one side to the other.
B refers to borders – be wary of irregular or ill-defined borders.
C signifies color – particularly varied colors within the same mole or sections that are red, white, gray, or blue.
D stands for diameter – Spots that are larger than a pencil eraser are of particular concern, but any new lesion, no matter how small, should be checked by your dermatologist.
E refers to evolution of a mole whether it be by size, shape or color. Any such change should warrant further examination.