Early Detection

Examining your skin on a regular basis could lead to early detection, treatment and in most cases, positive outcomes. The Canadian Skin Cancer Foundation recommends self examinations at least monthly, using the ABCDEs of early detection to help determine if a doctor should be consulted. At the same time, it is also important to check your whole body, including asking someone to help check your back and scalp. Skin cancer can show up on parts of the body that are not always exposed to the sun, so make sure you check places like your armpits or the bottoms of your feet.

ABCDEs of Early Detection


  • The first way to check a mole is by its shape.  A circle is a symmetrical shape, as both halves look the same. Healthy moles are symmetrical in shape.
  • Asymmetrical moles are abnormal. They have sides that look different from one another. If you were to draw a line down the middle of your mole, and one side looks different than the other, you should ask your doctor to check it.
  • In the picture shown below the mole on the left is nice and symmetrical, but the funny looking mole on the right is not symmetrical.
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