Does a Irregular Black Mole Always Mean Melanoma?

My mom has this small black irregular mole on the side of her hand. Don't know how long its been there. It's irregular black that fades into brown which is then curved inwards. Does a black irregular mole ALWAYS 100% mean its melanoma? I know all the ABCDE's and procedures to take it off but just super worried. We are going to go get it biopsied soon. Thank you.

Doctor Answers 3

Melanoma Update

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Irregular moles or nevi should be evaluated by a Board Certified Dermatologist.  If appropriate the Dermatologist might recommend surgical removal.  Dermatologists are uniquely qualified to diagnose skin lesions and should always be involved in treatment and follow-up.  Characteristics of irregular moles are enlarging size, irregular color, irregular pigmentation, bleeding, ulceration, or itching.  When in doubt it is always better to seek the opinion of a dermatologist.

Advances in care for skin cancers including melanoma are always advancing.  Your dermatologist will know the best course of action for any irregular mole or skin carcer.

Dallas Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Irregular Black Mole

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The simple answer is NO.  First of all, what you are calling a mole may not be a mole at all. It may be a seborrheic keratosis which many dermatologist refer to as "barnacles".  They can be dark and irregular but are not melanoma or pre melanoma. And secondly some normal moles appear somewhat irregular. But with all that being said, you cannot take any chances and you are doing the appropriate thing to see your dermatologist who will biopsy the lesion if there is any question 


Good luck!

Sandy Martin, MD
Fort Myers Dermatologist

Irregular black mole

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The irregular black mole that you describe is certainly suggestive of a melanoma, but it could be a pre-melanoma.  It must be removed ASAP and sent for pathology for a definite diagnosis.  Good luck.

Martie Gidon, MD, FRCPC
Toronto Dermatologist

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These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.