© Geotrac | Dreamstime Stock Photos

© Geotrac | Dreamstime Stock Photos

I see moles all day in the clinic. Everyone has one somewhere. While there are a million and one things that cause skin lesions, when you ask me to check out a mole,

I am thinking of one thing and one thing only – does this mole in front of me look like melanoma (or not).

Everything else is a nuisance.  We will take care of the mole but if it’s not it’s not melanoma, it will not kill you. Melanoma on the other hand kills and kills the young.

The quick run-through is called the ABCs of melanoma.

A – Asymmetry. If you cut a line across the mole, will each half look similar?

B – Borders. If you took a pen and traced the mole out, does it form a nice rounded shape like a circle or an oval or is it as irregular as the shape fried eggs gives you?

C – Color. Is the mole of one color or does it have all sorts of “shades of grey” within it?

Regular moles have one color and one shape to them, any mole that is yucky, irregular, has increased in size or gives you the creeps deserves a trip to the doctor to be checked out.

About the author

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Dr. Bola

Family physician. Works for the "man" by day, wife & mom 24/7.
Loves the work of translating "medicalese" to plain english.

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