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Doctor insights on: What Percentage Of Moles Are Usually Cancerous

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Dr. Tsu-Yi Chuang Dr. Chuang
Dermatology
46 years in practice
National Cheng Kung University College of Medicine
1
Dr. Barry Rosen
4,330 Doctors shared insights

Cancer (Definition)

Cancer is a group of diseases that is characterized by uncontrolled cell growth leading to invasion of surrounding tissues that spread to other parts of the body. Cancer can begin anywhere in the body and is usually related to one or more genetic mutations that allow normal cells to become malignant by interfering with internal cellular control mechanisms, such as programmed cell death or by preventing ...Read more


Dr. Heidi Fowler Dr. Fowler
Psychiatry
21 years in practice
Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine
2

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Are all large moles cancerous?

Are all large moles cancerous?

No: However, recommend annual head to toe evaluation of skin & nails to insure that no skin lesions appear to be consistent with malignancy.

Dr. Danny Proffitt Dr. Proffitt
Family Medicine
39 years in practice
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences/UAMS College of Medicine
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What do cancerous moles look like?

What do cancerous moles look like?

Changing mole: It can be hard to tell sometimes but for the lay person, any mole that is changing color, character, bleeds, gets darker, gets irregular or has symptoms, should be examined by a physician knowlegeable about such lesions. A dermatologist is a specialist in this area. If you are even in doubt, get it checked out. Google warning signs of skin cancers.

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Dr. Robert Dorsey Dr. Dorsey
Wound care
32 years in practice
Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific
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What are the signs of cancerous moles?

What are the signs of cancerous moles?

I agree: If there is a concern see your physician. A general surgeon or plastic surgeon may also be an alternative source.

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Dr. Travis Kidner Dr. Kidner
Surgery - Oncology
13 years in practice
University of Cincinnati College of Medicine
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What are black moles and are they cancerous?

What are black moles and are they cancerous?

ABCD's: Remember your abcd's when thinking of melanoma. Look for moles with asymmetry boarders that are irregular color differences within the same mole diameter greater than 6mm also any new mole or old that starts to itch, bleed or ulcerate should be of concern. Another rule is the ugly duckling rule. Which refers to a mole that looks distantly different from the others on your body.

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Dr. Gregory Vipond Dr. Vipond
Facial Plastic Surgery
15 years in practice
Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons
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What are the chances of having cancerous moles?

What are the chances of having cancerous moles?

Depends on the mole: While moles are generally benign, or non-cancerous, there are some that can contain cancer. One class of mole, called congenital giant nevus, is very large and dark and can become a melanoma. Typical moles are very unlikely to be cancerous, but any concerning lesion should be evaluated by a physician.

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Dr. Louis Cooper Dr. Cooper
Pediatrics
44 years in practice
Medical College of Georgia School of Medicine
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Are moles with irregular borders always cancerous?

Are moles with irregular borders always cancerous?

Follow-up: Moles should be photographed and followed by a dermatologist. Irregular borders are not always cancerous. Careful follow-up and observation for redness, ulceration, or pigment spillage are concerning. Please see a dermatologist.

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Dr. Sewa Legha Dr. Legha
Internal Medicine - Oncology
46 years in practice
Punjab University, Christian Medical College
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Please answer, are all irregular shaped moles cancerous?

Please answer, are all irregular shaped moles cancerous?

No, not always!: Most primary melanomas have irregular margins (border) but not all irregular moles are cancerous. If the mole has changed in size or share or become irregular recetly, then a biopsy of the mole is advised. Without biopsy we can not be certain about it being cancerous.

Dr. Alan Ali Dr. Ali
Psychiatry
28 years in practice
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences/UAMS College of Medicine
9
Dr. Heidi Fowler Dr. Fowler
Psychiatry
21 years in practice
Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine
10

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Are all moles that change cancerous? I've always had a lot of moles and I'm almost 35... some have changed. None are painful.

Are all moles that change cancerous? I've always had a lot of moles and I'm almost 35... some have changed. None are painful.

Well, since we can't: See your moles - rather than take chances would encourage you to see dermatologist for a head to toe check of your skin. That way - it can be determined if any of your moles appear suspicious or need to be biopsied. Take care.

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Dr. Sewa Legha Dr. Legha
Internal Medicine - Oncology
46 years in practice
Punjab University, Christian Medical College
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I have 4 moles with 2 or 3 shades of brown are they more likely to be atypical moles because there are 4 rather than cancerous?

I have 4 moles with 2 or 3 shades of brown are they more likely to be atypical moles because there are 4 rather than cancerous?

It depends on size: Moles which are >4-5 mm in size (bigger than pencil eraser) are often considered abnormal or Atypical. If there is mixture of colors instead of one uniform color, then the moles become suspect for Melanoma. You should show these to your doctor who may consider doing a biopsy if there is suspicion of melanoma. The main warning sign of melanoma to watch for is a changing mole (in color or size)

Dr. Gary Lane Dr. Lane
Surgery
26 years in practice
George Washington University Medical School
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How does a cancerous mole look?

How does a cancerous mole look?

ABCD: Just remember the abc's. A- asymmetric or irregular b- bleeds c- color changes d- diameter or size enlargement.

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Dr. Michael Thompson Dr. Thompson
Internal Medicine - Hematology & Oncology
16 years in practice
Mayo Clinic College of Medicine
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How do you know if a mole is cancerous?

ABCD: I agree that biopsy is the only sure way to tell what it is. Signs to look for on skin lesions are asymmetry, border irregularity, color unevenness, diameter >6 mm.

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Dr. Tushar Patel Dr. Patel
Radiology
22 years in practice
UC Irvine School of Medicine
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What does having a cancerous mole mean?

What does having a cancerous mole mean?

Cancer: It needs to be biopsied or completely removed by a physician. It then needs to be checked under the microscope by a pathologist to determine the type of cancer and how deep it invades the skin and underlying tissues. Some skin cancers, especially melanoma, have the ability to spread to distant parts of the body. You need more information from the doctors involved with this case.

Dr. Gurmukh Singh Dr. Singh
Pathology
45 years in practice
University of Pune, Armed Forces Medical College
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What does it mean if my mole is cancerous?

Treatment: Cancerous mole may be cured by surgical resection of a localized lesion. If it has already spread, the patient may need chemotherapy and/or immunotherapy.

Dr. Tsu-Yi Chuang Dr. Chuang
Dermatology
46 years in practice
National Cheng Kung University College of Medicine
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How do you tell if you have a cancerous mole?

You can't: But your dermatologist can. We usually use an abcde guideline: a means asymmetrical lesion, b, border irregularity, c, color changed, d, diameter larger than 6mm and e, elevated lesion. If all abcde shown on one particular lesion: the "mole" might be bad.

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Dr. Guillermo Martinez-torres Dr. Martinez-torres
Pathology
29 years in practice
University of Illinois College of Medicine
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How do you know if you have a cancerous mole?

How do you know if you have a cancerous mole?

See a doctor: See a doctor to have the mole looked at. If they are concerned, they will biopsy or send you to a dermatologist to look at. The only way to know if it is cancerous or not is to biopsy and send to a lab for microscopic evaluation.

Dr. Andrew Turrisi Dr. Turrisi
Radiation Oncology
43 years in practice
Georgetown University School of Medicine
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Is it possible to tell if a mole is cancerous?

Experts can look: And tell, but still biopsy or excise. Appearance, bleeding, color change, depth, expansion radially are all characteristics of melanoma. Some basal cells are pigmented. Why internet? Go see a malignancy astute dermatologist. I would.

Dr. Myron Arlen Dr. Arlen
Surgery - Oncology
60 years in practice
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What will happen if cancerous mole goes untreated?

Spreads: The rule for all tumors is that if you leave them alone they will grow on you. Melanoma or a malignant mole can rapidly spread to lymph nodes and then disseminate to every known organ in the body. It can produce satellites adjacent to the primary, ulcerate and bleed. In rare instances spontaneous regression is seen probably because of shedding of tumor protein into the skin inducing immunity.

Dr. Donald Higby Dr. Higby
Internal Medicine - Oncology
48 years in practice
Stanford University School of Medicine
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What's a good way to check if my mole is cancerous?

What's a good way to check if my mole is cancerous?

Biopsy: Most doctors can tell a non-cancerous mole from one that might be cancerous. You could look up pictures on the web if you don't want to see your doctor. But if you are really worried show him/her next chance you get. Moles which are rough, increasing in size, or bleed or have areas of different color are suspicious. Smooth round flat stable ones are not very suspicious.

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Dr. Coyle Connolly
1,095 Doctors shared insights

Moles (Definition)

A mole (also called a nevus) is a localized overgrowth of pigment-producing cells (melanocytes) in the skin. Most moles are benign. However, these cells can become cancerous. This is known as melanoma, ...Read more


Dr. Coyle Connolly
479 Doctors shared insights

Nevi (Definition)

Nevi ...Read more