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A-B-C-D-E of Melanoma

One of the challenges of identifying melanoma is that it can resemble a mole, which is both common and unrelated to melanoma. The challenge is to identify melanoma growths at an early stage, before they progress and become dangerous. Called the ABCDEs of melanoma, these acronyms will help you identify the key indicators of melanoma.


Most moles are round in shape and roughly symmetrical. Melanomas on the other hand, often look different from your typical moles. They are often (but not always) asymmetrical. A good way to test this is to draw an imaginary line through the center of the mole. If it creates roughly equal parts, with similar shapes, the lesion is symmetrical.

First, look at his image of a mole.
This mole is roughly symmetrical. If you draw an imaginary line though the center of the lesion, you should see a very similar shape between the left and right side of the line.
Melanoma lesion:
Note that the lesion is not symmetrical. Imagine drawing a line through the center of the lesion. You will not get equal looking halves from the mole image (on the left).

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