Skin Cancer Home > The ABCDE Signs of Skin Cancer: "D" Is for Diameter
Does having a large mole mean you have skin cancer? While it's true that moles larger than a pencil eraser (about ¼ inch thick) have a greater risk of being cancerous, the only way to know for sure is to check with your healthcare provider. If melanoma is suspected, part of the tissue will be removed and checked for cancer cells.
- A for asymmetry -- one half of a mole does not match the other
- B for border irregularity -- the edges are irregular, notched, or blurred
- C for color -- the color is not the same all over and may include shades of brown or black, or sometimes with patches of pink, red, white, or blue
- D for diameter -- the spot is larger than 6 millimeters across (about ¼ inch -- the size of a pencil eraser), although melanomas can sometimes be smaller than this
- E for evolving -- the mole is changing in size, shape, or color.