Melanoma, A Type Of Skin Cancer

Definition and causes: Melanomas are malignant tumors derived from melanocytes. The most common site of involvement is the skin, although occasionally primary melanoma develops in other organs (eye, oral and nasal mucosa, vulval and anorectal mucosa, other gastrointestinal mucosa and the central nervous system (CNS)).

Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from sunlight or tanning lamps and beds increases your risk of developing melanoma therefore limiting your exposure to UV radiation can help reduce your risk of melanoma.

They most often develop in areas that have had exposure to the sun, such as your back, legs, arms and face.

Symptoms: A change in an existing mole and the development of a new pigmented or unusual-looking growth on your skin are the first melanoma signs and symptoms. Melanoma doesn’t always begin as a mole. It can also occur on otherwise normal-appearing skin. Unusual moles that may indicate melanoma. To help you identify characteristics of unusual moles that may indicate melanomas or other skin cancers.

Characteristics of benign vs. malignant lesion

Characteristic Benign lesionPotentially malignant lesion
GrowthNot growingGrowing
Number/locationMany other similar lesionsOn sun exposed areas of the body
ShapeRegular shape with smooth outline or line of symmetryNo symmetry
ColorUniform pigmentationVariation in pigmentation within lesion
OccurrencePresent for many yearsNew lesion

Unusual moles that may indicate melanoma…