Can Melanoma Go Undetected For Years?

Can skin cancer go undetected for years?

For example, certain types of skin cancer can be diagnosed initially just by visual inspection — though a biopsy is necessary to confirm the diagnosis.

But other cancers can form and grow undetected for 10 years or more, as one study found, making diagnosis and treatment that much more difficult..

How long is melanoma undiagnosed?

Melanoma can grow very quickly. It can become life-threatening in as little as six weeks and, if untreated, it can spread to other parts of the body. Melanoma can appear on skin not normally exposed to the sun. Nodular melanoma is a highly dangerous form of melanoma that looks different from common melanomas.

What skin cancer looks like when it starts?

These spots can be flat or raised and can bleed easily. Non-melanoma skin cancer, also known as basal and squamous cell carcinoma, typically appear as small, pearly, or pale bumps or as dark red patches that can be raised, flat or scaly in texture.

What does the beginning of basal cell carcinoma look like?

At first, a basal cell carcinoma comes up like a small “pearly” bump that looks like a flesh-colored mole or a pimple that doesn’t go away. Sometimes these growths can look dark. Or you may also see shiny pink or red patches that are slightly scaly. Another symptom to watch out for is a waxy, hard skin growth.

Which Skin cancer is most likely to metastasize?

Melanoma. These cancers develop from melanocytes, the pigment-making cells found in the epidermis. Melanomas are much less common than basal and squamous cell cancers, but they are more likely to grow and spread if left untreated.

What happens if skin cancer goes undetected?

When detected early, melanoma can be entirely removed. In most cases, this will be the only treatment required. But if left undetected, melanoma can spread to other parts of the body, including vital organs. There are two broad types of skin cancers; melanoma and non-melanoma.

Can you have stage 4 melanoma and not know it?

Sometimes the symptoms for stage 4 melanoma may not appear for many years after the original tumor was removed. Talk to your doctor if you’re feeling new pains and aches or symptoms. They’ll be able to help diagnose the cause and recommend treatment options.

Can you have melanoma and feel fine?

Unfortunately, melanoma can be a silent killer. You can feel fine when you have it. You might not see any visible skin lesions, even as it spreads to your lymph nodes and body systems.

How can you tell if a spot is cancerous?

How to Spot Skin CancerAsymmetry. One part of a mole or birthmark doesn’t match the other.Border. The edges are irregular, ragged, notched, or blurred.Color. The color is not the same all over and may include shades of brown or black, sometimes with patches of pink, red, white, or blue.Diameter. … Evolving.