Signs Of Skin Cancer

Signs To Look For 1 of 12

Sun exposure is the main cause of skin cancer, which is the uncontrolled growth of abnormal skin cells. It's the most common cancer in the United States, with more than 1 in 5 Americans developing skin cancer at some point during their lives.

To prevent skin cancer, limit your exposure to the sun, especially between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., when the sun's rays are strongest. Apply SPF 30 or higher sunscreen, cover up with clothing, and wear a hat and sunglasses.

The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends checking your skin from head to toe once a month, and seeing your doctor once a year for a skin exam.

Skin cancer is usually found on sun-exposed skin, but may occur on any body part.

If you notice any of the following skin changes, see your doctor right away.

  • a new skin growth or one that gets bigger
  • a mole, freckle, or spot that changes
  • a sore that doesn't heal
  • a scaly patch of skin that won't go away
  • any of the ABCDE signs of melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer: Asymmetry, Border, Color, Diameter, Evolution