Most people have moles, and most moles are harmless. But when a mole may indicate a skin cancer it’s important to be able to identify it early. The ABCDE rule outlined below can help you to determine whether you should get a mole checked by a health professional ASAP.
A – Asymmetry
Your mole is wonky – the shape of one half of the mole is not the same as the other half.
B – Border
An irregular border on your mole can indicate a problem. Look out for ragged, notched or blurred mole outlines.
C – Colour
Uneven colour should be a red flag. Shades of brown, tan and black in the same mole are more common, but you may also notice whites, greys, reds, pinks and blues. Any uneven colouring is worth getting checked.
D – Diameter
Note whether the diameter of your mole is changing. Usually this means growing, so if your mole is getting bigger it’s time to make yourself an appointment.
E – Evolving
Changes happening quickly enough for you to notice them have probably taken place in the last few weeks or months. Any mole changing over this relatively short time period is worth getting checked.
If any of your moles raise concerns after using the ABCDE method, be sure to visit a health professional. And don’t forget to ask a friend to check your back!