Skin cancer self examination

Nearly all skin cancers can be cured if detected and treated early.

Skin cancers rarely hurt and are much more frequently seen than felt. It is important to develop a regular habit of checking your skin for new spots and changes to existing freckles or moles. Self examination can detect skin cancers in their early stages.

Some changes to look for include:
  • New moles;
  • Moles that increases in size;
  • An outline of a mole that becomes notched;
  • A spot that changes colour from brown to black or is varied;
  • A spot that becomes raised or develops a lump within it;
  • The surface of a mole becoming rough, scaly or ulcerated;
  • Moles that itch or tingle;
  • Moles that bleed or weep; or
  • Spots that look different from the others

Although you may notice some of these changes, it does not necessarily mean that you have skin cancer, however it is important that you see a health professional to have them investigated further.

More information

For diagrams and more specific information about checking your skin, view our ‘Where can I have my skin spots checked’ brochure.

For more information call our Cancer Council on 13 11 20.
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