Warning Signs of Skin Cancer
Do you know your ABCDEs of skin cancer?
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer. Many overlook the risks of prolonged sun exposure. “In Denver, the mile high city, we have 25 percent more U.V. in the ambient light than compared to the same light level at sea level,” said dermatologist Dr. Neil Box. “At 10,000 feet you’re at 50 percent more U.V. than at sea level. Ultraviolet light or U.V. is one of the main causes of skin cancer.”
They may not catch warning signs before the cancer has advanced. Do a self-exam once a month throughout the year. This can help you catch anything suspicious-looking on your skin. While most moles and spots on the skin are harmless, there are some warning signs to look for:
- A – Asymmetry. Normal moles are the same on both sides. Watch out for uneven halves.
- B – Border irregularity. Borders should be smooth and even. Watch out for a tail or other irregularities.
- C – Color. Most moles are one color and should match other moles. Look out for different shades or colors, especially red, white, or blue.
- D – Diameter. Look out for changes in size. Most moles are small. Note if any moles are getting bigger.
- E – Evolving. Moles usually look the same over time. Be alert to any changes. Itching or bleeding, for example, whether it has become raised, or whether it has changed in shape and size.
It’s also important you protect your skin to reduce the chance of developing cancer. Limit sun exposure; wear hats and high-SPF sunscreen; and spend time in the shade when you’re able to. Visit this site for help with your monthly self-check: