Moles, freckles, skin tags & skin cancer
There are several skin lesions that are very common and most often
are benign (non- cancerous). These conditions include moles (naevii),
freckles, skin tags, benign lentigines and seborrheic keratoses.
Moles are growths on the skin that are often brown or black. Moles can
appear anywhere on the skin, alone or in groups.
Other common benign (non-cancerous) moles are raised skin coloured
lesions called intradermal naevii.
Most moles appear in early childhood and during the first 20 years of a
person's life. Some moles may not appear until later in life. It is normal
to have between 10-40 moles by adulthood.
As the years pass, moles usually change slowly. Often, hairs develop
on the mole. Some moles may not change at all, while others may
slowly disappear over time.
A mole or freckle should be checked if it has a diameter of more than
6mm or any characteristics of the ABCDEs (below).
A helpful way to remember what to look for is to use the ABCDE
- A - asymmetry
- B - border irregularity
- C - colour change
- D - diameter
- E - elevated (raised) or enlarged
If you notice any changes to your moles or are worried about them,
seek medical advice.
If you see any signs of change in an existing mole, if you have a new
mole, or if you want a mole to be removed for cosmetic reasons, seek