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Skin Cancer: Symptoms

Changes in the skin are often the first warning sign of melanoma. An accurate diagnosis by a doctor or other healthcare professional is critical. Often, the diagnosis can only accurately be made after a lesion is removed and examined. Melanoma can appear anywhere on the body, even on areas that are not exposed to the sun, and can appear in a number of different ways:

  • A new, possibly large, irregularly shaped, dark brownish spot with darker or black areas.
  • A simple mole that changes in color (particularly turning darker), size (growing), texture (becoming firmer) and/or flakes or bleeds.
  • A lesion with an irregular border and red, white, blue, gray or bluish-black areas or spots.
  • Shiny, firm, dome-shaped bumps anywhere on the body.
  • Dark lesions under the fingernails or toenails, on the palms, soles, tips of fingers and toes, or on mucous membranes (skin that lines the mouth, nose, vagina and anus).
Last updated: 5/26/2010 3:10:33 PM