What is melanoma?
Melanoma is considered the most dangerous form of skin cancer as it typically will spread to other areas of the body, including organs, if left untreated.
Non-melanoma skin cancers, such as Squamous Cell Carcinoma and Basal Cell Carcinoma, are generally considered less dangerous as they are less likely to spread and can usually be treated with surgery. It can occur anywhere on the body, including areas not exposed to the sun, like inside the mouth or the palms of the hands. Men are more likely to get melanomas on their back while women are more likely to experience them on their legs.
Melanoma begins in melanocyte cells. It occurs when those cells behave abnormally, growing excessively and taking over surrounding tissues. They can develop from existing moles or skin growths, but, more commonly, they will start as a new growth.
For more on common forms of skin cancer, view our page on Skin Cancer.
All about Melanoma
Everyone is at risk of getting Melanoma, however not everyone has the same risk as a large variety of factors can cause it. From personal or family history to outside behaviour – there is a lot that can impact skin health.
Melanoma has been on the rise for years for different reasons. Increased tanning, low awareness and more sun exposure during holidays.
Early detection is the key to treating it. The earlier it is found, the more treatment options there are.
Make sure to self-check your whole body every 3 months if you have more than 50 moles. In other cases, do it at least twice per year.
Pictures of Melanoma
Our overview of melanoma pictures includes pictures of moles and other skin lesions, that you can use as a first comparison to any moles you might feel uncomfortable with.
The melanoma pictures give you an idea of what it can look like. Signs of melanoma can differ in form, color or borders. These signs are measured below each picture.
Other characteristics such as diameter and evolution are not shown, as they are difficult to assess through static images. However, when you check your skin, make sure to check for these signs, too.
Disclaimer: These images contain visual content that might be perceived as disturbing.
Frequently asked questions about
There are four main types of melanoma:
– Superficial spreading melanoma: This is the most common type, accounting for about 70% of melanoma cases. It can occur anywhere on the body, but is found more frequently in the upper back, legs in women and torso in men.
– Lentigo maligna: This is the most common form in the elderly and it is most likely to appear in sun-exposed areas, especially head and neck
– Acral lentiginous melanoma: This is the most common form of melanoma found in people with darker skin, mainly individuals with African ancestry. It is most frequently found on the sole of the feet, palm of the hands or beneath the nail.
– Nodular melanoma: The most aggressive form, corresponds to 10-15% of melanoma cases.
Other types like amelanotic and desmoplastic melanomas are rare.
The first melanoma warning signs often are the appearance of a new skin spot or an existing skin lesion that grows or changes in color or shape. You should pay attention to spots that look different from all of the other spots on your skin.
Melanoma spreads when the tumor’s malignant cells travel through the bloodstream or lymphatic system to other parts of the body such as lymph nodes, tissues or organs.
How SkinVision can help you!
SkinVision enables you to check your skin spots for signs of skin cancer within 30 seconds. Our algorithm is currently at the level of a specialist dermatologist.
In skin spots with a potential health risk, SkinVision provides feedback about the preferred next step to take.
SkinVision also enables you to store photos to keep track of changes over time, helping you to monitor your health in the long term.
The efficient and easy-to-use solution is available for iOS and Android and helps to make skin monitoring a simple routine.