Benign moles have different names depending on their color and when they present in life. Moles may be present at birth or develop in the first few decades of life. Almost everyone has at least one mole and they can occur on every body site, including on the scalp, eyes, and genital area. The tendency to develop great numbers of moles runs in families.
The most important part of our job, as dermatologists, is early detection of skin cancer. We encourage our patients to perform self-examinations frequently, bring suspicious growths to our attention and come in for a full body skin examination annually.
The ABCDEs have been developed to help patients examine themselves at home and to recognize changes in moles that may necessitate an evaluation. These changes could indicate a transformation melanoma, a deadly form of skin cancer.