Early malignant melanoma can appear without warning but may develop from or near a mole. Use "ABCDE" to remember the signs and symptoms of this type of cancer:
- Asymmetry: One-half of the mole doesn't match the other.
- Border: Edges of the mole are ragged.
- Color: Pigmentation is not uniform and may spread into the surrounding skin.
- Diameter: Mole's diameter is larger than the size of a pencil eraser.
- Elevation: Mole is raised above the skin and has an uneven surface.
Any one—or all—of these traits may indicate malignant melanoma. If you see any of these, schedule an appointment with your doc.