How to Spot a Melanoma

Skin Cancer

Melanoma on patient’s leg prior to removal by Dr Ross Perry

Melanoma is a dangerous form of skin cancer which starts in the pigment-making skin cells but can spread to other parts of the body. 

Melanoma may initially look like a mole and can actually start as a mole. DNA damage caused by UV radiation from the sun or sunbeds is the main cause of melanoma. This can cause cells to grow out of control and lead to melanoma skin cancer.

According to Cancer Research UK, the number of people diagnosed with melanoma in the UK has increased by almost half over the last 10 years, making it the 5th most common cancer in the UK. It accounts for over 2,000 deaths a year according to the NHS.

Signs & Symptoms

The first sign of a melanoma is often a new mole or a change in an existing mole. Things to look for are well summarised by the  ABCDE mole checking rules:

  • Asymmetry – an odd or uneven shape
  • Border – this may be unusually rough or jagged
  • Colour – tends to be particularly dark or blotchy mix of colours
  • Diameter – most melanomas are larger than 6mm (1/4 inch) in diameter
  • Evolving – a mole that has changed in appearance or behaviour (e.g. started to itch or ooze)

Melanoma can appear anywhere on the face or body. As they tend to be related to sun exposure, they most commonly appear on men’s backs and women’s legs but this is not an absolute – they can even appear on areas that have not been exposed to the sun.

However, these are not hard and fast rules. A melanoma might not display all or even any of these signs. That’s why Dr Ross Perry also advocates the ugly duckling sign – looking out for a mole/moles which are different and ‘odd’. A hunch that it’s not right is best checked out by a GP or mole expert.

Dr Ross Perry, a leading mole removal expert who is the Company’s founder and Medical Director, advises patients to seek medical attention as soon as possible to rule out skin cancer.

Skin Surgery Laser Clinics

Cosmedics’ Skin Surgery Laser Clinic offer private mole removal at a selection of clinics based in London and Bristol. Moles are removed using the latest surgical techniques including laser mole removal; with trained doctors and surgeons.

Our team of qualified and experienced doctors and surgeons also treat other skin blemishes, including sebaceous cystsskin tagswarts and lipoma using  freezing, laser or surgical techniques.

For ultimate peace of mind, Cosmedics Skin Surgery Laser Clinic offer a thorough top to toe mole check carried out by their trained and experienced doctors.

Cosmedics Skin Clinics was founded in 2003 by Dr Ross Perry, a qualified and experienced London GP who has an excellent reputation in skin treatments and has removed thousands of lesions/blemishes in his career.

For more information or to book a consultation, please complete the form on this web page or call 020 7386 0464.