Video: The ABCDE of skin cancer
2162 Australians died from skin cancer in 2015.
2 in 3 Australians will be diagnosed with skin cancer by the time they’re 70.
Australia has one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world & every moment spent in the sun puts you at greater risk.
The best response available is to be sun-smart & to check your body regularly for signs of skin cancer.
Skin cancer is treatable and curable if identified early enough.
The first step is to get to know your skin and do regular self-checks, looking out for any new spots, & changes in shape, size or colour of a spot.
Make sure to check areas of skin that are not normally exposed to sunlight, such as the soles of your feet or under your nails & use a mirror or ask your partner or family member to help check your back, neck and scalp.
The Cancer Council’s ABCDE melanoma detection method is a useful guide –
- A is for Asymmetry – do the two sides of a spot look asymmetrical or misshapen?
- B is for Border – is the border of the spot irregular or notched & is the border expanding?
- C is for Colour – does the spot contain a mix of colours such as black, blue, red, white and/or grey?
- D is for Diameter – is the spot diameter increasing in size between checks?
- E is for Evolving – does the spot change appearance and grow in size?
If you’ve identified a spot on your skin that appears to have changed make sure to get it checked by your doctor. The risks are too high to ignore & your best chance of beating skin cancer is to detect it early.
Start checking yourself for skin cancer with ABCDE & enjoy being sun-smart today and every day.
Last Reviewed: 19/11/2018
Skin cancer: the warning signs
How to detect potential skin cancers, what are the warning signs and what are the steps in the diagnosis of skin cancer.
Skin cancer treatment options
The treatment of non-melanoma skin cancer has a high success rate, provided it is detected at an early stage. Read about the different treatment options.
Skin cancer: what is it?
Understanding the main types of skin cancer: basal cell carcinoma, melanoma and squamous cell carcinoma and skin cancer treatment options.
Melanoma is the most serious form of skin cancer. Most melanomas arise as a new spot on previously normal skin, rather than from a pre-existing mole.
Sun care options
Sunburn and skin damage are caused by too much exposure of your skin to UV radiation, from the sun or a sunlamp. Find out what products are available for sun care.