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Malignant Melanoma Guidelines

Skin Cancer Screening

In 2009, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) concluded there is not enough evidence to recommend for or against routine screening (total body examination by a primary care physician or patient self-examination) for early detection of skin cancers in the adult general population.
However, those recommendations are currently in the process of being updated.

The USPSTF did make the following clinical practice recommendations:

Physicians should remain aware that fair-skinned men and women aged 65 and older, and people with atypical moles or more than 50 moles, are at greater risk for melanoma; other risk factors for skin cancer include family history and a considerable history of sun exposure and sunburns

When performing physical examinations for other reasons, remain alert for skin lesions with malignant features

Asymmetry, border irregularity, color variability, diameter greater than 6 mm (ABCD criteria), or rapidly changing lesions are features associated with an increased risk for cancer

All suspicious lesions should be biopsied

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