Malignant melanoma exists in a deeper layer of skin compared to other skins cancers. Experts say this is one of the reasons it is the most serious type of skin cancer. The deeper it starts from, the higher are the chances of it spreading.

Patients mainly have melanomas on the back of the legs, arms and face. However, it can affect other locations too.

The first signs of a melanoma could be:

  • A new mole appears.
  • An existing mole changes in appearance from its usual single color and round/oval shape, not larger than ¼ of an inch (6mm) in diameter.
  • Melanomas look like moles with an irregular shape. They tend to have more than just one color. They are generally larger than ¼ of an inch (6mm) in diameter.
  • With some patients the melanoma may itch, and even bleed.

Melanoma Research Foundation

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