• Level 6, 24 Collins Street, Melbourne
  • (03) 9939 8115

Melanoma

Melanoma is a potentially serious type of skin cancer

Melanoma is caused by the changes in cells called melanocytes. Melanocytes are what produce skin pigments called melanin, which is responsible for the appearance of your skin colour.

Melanoma is now the third most common malignancy in Australia for both sexes, behind colorectal, breast and prostate cancer.

If detected early, most melanomas are curable. If they are not detected until later, they can become more serious.

At Melbourne City Dermatology, our dermatologists are committed to early detection of melanoma, and keep up to date with the latest trials and research relating to melanoma. 

We see patients with no prior history of melanoma to perform preventative checks, and also manage patients long term with a history of melanoma in the family, those who have had melanomas removed or those who have been seen by their GP with a lesion of concern.

Melanoma requires surgical treatment, which is usually performed in our well equipped and modern surgical facility on site. Occasionally, in the case of advanced melanoma we may co-ordinate your surgery with the Victorian Melanoma Service.

Melanoma FAQs

Risk Factors for Melanoma

Anyone can develop skin cancer, however the risks are higher for those that have:

  • A history of repeat sunburns and blistering
  • A history of close family members that have had melanoma
  • Previously used solariums
  • Increased number of moles
  • Unusual looking moles
  • Fair skin which easily burns, freckles and never tans

The ABCDE Guide for Melanoma

The most important warning signs to look out for in melanomas are new lesions or if any spots change in colour, size, or shape.

  • (A) Asymmetry: One half of a mole or birthmark does not match the other.
  •  (B) Border: The edges are irregular, ragged, notched, or blurred.
  • (C) Colour: The colour is not the same all over and may include shades of brown or black, or sometimes with patches of pink, red, white, or blue.
  • (D) Diameter: The spot is larger than 5 millimetres across, although melanomas can sometimes be smaller than this.
  • (E) Evolving: The mole is changing in size, shape, or colour.

The Victorian Melanoma Service has developed a “risk calculator” to determine your risk of melanoma.

If you are concerned about a changing spot or need a skin check appointment, please contact us at (03) 9939 8115