Melanoma Mimics

Few health-related issues cause greater instantaneous anxiety and fear than suddenly discovering something new and unsightly on our skin. After the initial shock, it’s human nature for most people to immediately start thinking about worst-case scenarios. However, there‘s no need to panic or jump to conclusions. The reason is that there are many scary-looking, yet […]

Oral Melanoma

Oral melanoma is a rare type of melanoma. Most melanoma development is triggered by unprotected skin exposure to natural and artificial UV (ultraviolet) light. Oral, however, is not among the melanomas caused by UV rays. It’s a type of mucosal melanoma, which develops within mucus membranes. Areas within which mucosal melanomas are found include: Respiratory […]

Age Spots and Melanoma

If you’re a nonmedical layperson, you know them as age spots, sun spots or liver spots. If you’re a doctor, they’re solar lentigines or actinic lentigines. Whatever you call them though, while visually unappealing most age spots are benign (safe/noncancerous). They can start to appear as early as a person’s 40’s, usually on the face, […]

Melanoma Does Not Discriminate: The Story of Jacqueline Smith

One of the more difficult tasks when educating the public about melanoma, is helping to dispel the notion that it’s a “whites only” disease. While it’s true that whites are statistically much more susceptible to melanoma, it can develop in any person from any race. What’s also not widely known is, for various reasons, while […]

Sun Safety-Based Lessons are Ineffective for Educating Teens About Skin Cancer

Over the 18 years since the Melanoma Education Foundation (MEF) was founded, we’ve learned that the success of sun safety instruction varies, depending on the age of the students. Sun safety education has a much greater effect on elementary school students than it does on teens who attend junior high and high school. Sloan Kettering […]

Melanomas with No Identified Primary Site

Most melanomas are initially discovered on the skin. However, in a small percentage (5%-10%) of people who’ve had a recent melanoma diagnosis, the disease has spread beyond their skin and into other organs or lymph nodes; with little-to-none of the initial blemish left visible. Regression Though the amount varies widely, to some extent we all […]

Expediting a Dermatologist Appointment

When educating people about melanoma, the fact that is stressed the most (equally alongside the importance of monthly skin self-examinations) is how crucial it is to have skin cancer quickly diagnosed and treated. But what happens when you discover a suspicious skin growth and wisely go to have it checked out- only to learn that […]

CHANGE: The Most Important Melanoma Warning Sign

The appearance of melanomas can vary widely from one to another. They develop in many difference colors, sizes and other unique visual characteristics. For this reason, trying to discern whether a mole is cancerous just by looking at it isn’t a reliable method. Even dermatologists can’t always tell the difference based solely on appearance. However, […]

A Melanoma Menu

There is a lot to learn about melanoma. On the surface, it’s a fairly-straightforward subject; yet it’s also one that carries with it many important subtopics. This piece consists of selections from our previously published posts on the subject. To view the original Melanoma Education Foundation (MEF) article on any of the topics below, simply […]

Intermittent Sun Exposure and Melanoma Risk

Our efforts to increase melanoma education often include clearing up various misconceptions about the disease. Those who’ve never been taught much about skin cancer tend to make incorrect assumptions about it. One of these beliefs is that melanoma incidence is highest in southern states, and among people who consistently spend time out in the sun. […]