Skin cancer: Dr Chris outlines the signs of a melanoma
Skin cancer is among the most common forms of the disease in the world.
It is typically caused by overexposure to ultraviolet rays from the sun, however, there are other risk factors that can increase your chances of the disease.
There are two main types of skin cancer – melanoma and non-melanoma.
Non-melanoma is far more common and usually less deadly, whereas the former is less prevalent but more likely to spread to other areas of the body making it more dangerous.
As with any cancer, the earlier you spot the signs of melanoma the better chance of treatment and survival there is.
READ MORE Chris Evans announces cancer diagnosis live on air after two previous scares
Luckily for radio presenter Chris Evans it is believed his symptoms of melanoma were caught “as early as possible”.
Speaking on his Virgin Radio show today the 57-year-old revealed he had recently been diagnosed with skin cancer, sharing the story of how it was picked up.
He told listeners he was tested for the disease after his masseur discovered “a mark” on his shin.
“It’s as treatable as cancer can be to the extent that they call it ‘stage zero’,” Evans said.
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It is planned the cancerous mark will be removed in September.
He urged others to get checked if they notice any symptoms of the disease.
“Just check yourself for stuff, as you get older especially, on your skin, on your bits and your bobs,” he said.
“Just keep checking because the biggest weapon in your arsenal, in our collective arsenal… is early detection. And so please do that.”
Symptoms of melanoma skin cancer
According to the NHS, the most common symptoms are a new mole or a change in an existing mole.
The health body listed five key symptoms that should prompt an immediate visit to your doctor:
- A mole that’s changed size, shape or colour
- A mole that’s painful or itchy
- A mole that’s inflamed, bleeding or crusty
- A new or unusual mark on your skin that has not gone away after a few weeks
- A dark area under a nail that has not been caused by an injury.
“Finding a melanoma as early as possible can mean it’s easier to treat,” the NHS says.
Doctor Suhail Hussain, spoke with Express.co.uk about how to be sure whether a mole or mark should be checked out.
The GP said: “Use the ABCDE mnemonic to help you identify any cause for concern.”
- A – asymmetrical appearance
- B – border irregular
- C – colour: darker or irregular colour
- D – diameter: increase in size (greater than 6mm)
- E – evolving: change in size/shape/colour.
“Itching and bleeding are also (minor) characteristics to look out for,” he said.
He added: “Carry out a regular (self) skin survey – in front of the mirror, for hard to see places eg back ask your partner to check.
“Take photos of moles when they are found so objective appearance can be documented, making it easier for any potential changes to be noted.
“If there is any uncertainty, seek the advice of your GP or see a dermatologist.”
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