Almost everyone has moles – most have close to a dozen somewhere on their body. Moles are formed by melanocytes, skin cells that produce pigment, that are clumped together. Abnormal moles, though not malignant, may indicate a predisposition to developing melanoma. Abnormal moles also may run in families.
Abnormal moles can sometimes be difficult to distinguish from melanoma, as they may appear irregular in size, shape, or color. Signs that indicate moles need to be checked by a dermatologist are categorized by the ABDCE rule. This means to watch out for:
- Border irregularity.
- Color (specifically blue, white, black or red areas).
- Diameter (larger than ¼ inch in diameter).
- Evolution (including changes in texture).
Any mole that itches, bleeds, or is painful should also be checked by a dermatologist.
Regular skin exams from a dermatologist are the best way to identify precancerous moles or those indicating a risk of skin cancer. If you notice any abnormal moles or changes in your skin, contact us right away.
If you’re interested in learning more about our dermatology services, or are ready to schedule a consultation, request an appointment online or give us a call at (713) 328-0826.