Hello, my name is Neil Smith, I am a GP, and I am really interested in early diagnosis of cancer. So let's talk about cancer, and today I'd like to talk about malignant melanomas. That's a form of skin cancer.
It's actually the fifth most common cancer in the UK. I've come outside today, there is a message that when are out in the sun, we need to protect our skin, but also the warmer weather gives an opportunity to look and check over our mole. Now, loads of people have got moles like me, and the vast majority of those are benign ,but the things to look out for and the things I would be worried about is if you had a new sudden mole, or a change in an existing mole, and what are those changes? Well, It could be a change in the size of the mole, so if the mole is getting bigger, particularly if it's bigger than 7mm.
It could be a change in the colour of the mole, if the mole, for example, is going some irregular colours, some blacks, some browns and some pinks, and different shades of that.
It could be a change in the border of the mole. So for example, the border becoming asymmetrical, or irregular, or jagged.
And what about a change in the sensation? A mole that becomes itching can be a problem. And finally, anything else that doesn't look or feel right to you, like a mole becoming crusting, or inflamed, or oozing, or perhaps bleeding, and if you do get any of those changes, don't hesitate, please contact your GP, people like me want to know, we are here to help you. In the vast majority of cases, that will be normal, but it's best to get it checked out.
The sooner you diagnose skin cancers, especially malignant melanomas, the better the outcome, the easier it is to treat.
Early diagnosis of cancer saves lives.