Melanoma is a cancerous tumor. It develops of melanocytes, cells producing a protein melanin.
Types of Melanoma
Doctors put melanomas into three categories: superficial spreading melanoma, nodular melanoma and lentigo meligna melanoma.
Superficial spreading melanoma is most common. It develops of moles for a long time. Changing process lasts over several years. It develops in middle-aged people. In women, the melanoma occurs on ankles, in men, on back. It has uneven form and irregular shapes. Melanoma has brown and black colour. The process usually has a favourable outlook.
Nodular melanoma develops in 30% of cases. The tumor has a more aggressive nature. It forms on visually healthful skin areas. Commonly, the older people develop melanomas. The melanomas grow fast affecting nearby skin layers. They are node-shaped. The outlook may be unfavourable.
Lentigo meligna melanoma forms in about 10% of cases. Commonly older people form them. Flash-, dark black-, dark blue-coloured nodes form on skin. The diameter may be up to 3mm. Skin, face and other parts of the body are affected. The tumor grows very slowly. It may take tens of years. The outlook is favourable.
Causes of Melanoma
Melanomas need trigger to start forming from a common lump. The first factor is large dose of ultraviolet radiation. White people with many moles and freckles are exposed to sun light most of all. Excessive sunburn suddenly lowers the skin immunity.
Melanoma may be caused by a mole injury.
Symptoms of Melanoma
- Mole quickly changes in colour
- Uneven colour
- Asymmetric shape and flaking
- Inflammatory edge forms around melanoma.
- Mole gets blurred contour
- Area gets larger and firm
- Ragged surface
- Mole get itchy, tingly, bleeding and crackly
To avoid melanomas from developing you should follow the growth and formation of new moles, birthmarks and change of their shape and colour. As a rule, moles are not changed over many years. Regular moles have regular shape and even borders. The colour range is from flash-coloured to black. They are usually formed within first 10 years of life.
Moles size 0.5cm are worth special attention. Glossy-looking moles are a reason to be worried.
Tumor diagnostics is a necessary way of prevention, since melanoma like any other cancerous disease is best to be treated in the early stages.