When speaking of melanoma, talk of moles frequently comes up. Specifically, talk about checking them for suspicious changes. This is important as melanoma can develop in existing moles. However, the skin overall needs to be examined thoroughly. According to a new study, most cases of melanoma start off in new lesions.
Researchers examined 38 previously published medical studies involving melanoma. A total of 20,000 cases were involved. The analysis showed only 29% of melanomas started in existing moles. The remaining 71% started in new growths. Another important takeaway is that the cases that arose in new growths tended to be more aggressive than their counterparts.
This is not to say that checking existing moles is not important. It very much is. It is also just as important to keep track of your skin for any new growths, lesions, or patches. Melanoma is much easier to treat when it is caught early.
Pampena, R., et. al, "A Meta-Analysis of Nevus-Associated Melanoma: Prevalence and Practical Implications." Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. Published 08/29/2017. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2017.06.149