Mole Scanning Service

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What is the Mole Scanning Service?

The Mole Scanning Service can help identify moles and pigmented lesions that require further investigation, which could in turn lead to the detection of malignant melanoma (a type of skin cancer). The Mole Scanning Service doesn’t provide a diagnosis of skin cancer, but assesses the risk of the moles that are scanned.

Come in and talk to our Pharmacy Advisors if you’re worried about moles on your body. The service is operated by ScreenCancer with assistance from trained members of selected Boots pharmacy teams.

Who can use the service?

The Mole Scanning Service is for those aged 18 years old and over. If you are younger than 18, please see your GP if you have any concerns about your moles or pigmented lesions.

Please note, we cannot scan any moles or pigmented lesions:

  • Located in an intimate area of the body (eg genitals, areas of the breasts covered by a bra)
  • On the eyelid or the tip of an ear
  • Covered by an excessive amount of hair
  • That are wet, open or bleeding
  • That are on a tattoo
  • Located directly over a pacemaker

If any of these exclusions apply to you and you are still concerned about your mole, please see your GP for help.

How it works

There are two stages to the Mole Scanning Service.

Stage 1

A member of your Boots Pharmacy team will talk with you in a private consultation room. There will be a short questionnaire and consent form to complete.

  • You will be asked to identify the mole(s) or pigmented lesion(s) that you would like scanning – please note, our Boots Pharmacy team cannot advise you on this
  • Then a scan of the mole(s) or pigmented lesion(s) will be taken using a ScreenCancer SIAscope
  • The image will then be sent electronically to a ScreenCancer Dermatology Specialist

The consultation will last about 20 minutes.

Stage 2

The scans will be analysed by a qualified dermatologist on behalf of ScreenCancer for signs of malignant melanoma, and a report sent to you within two weeks.

If it shows that your mole(s) or pigmented lesion(s) is/are at risk, a ScreenCancer Dermatology Nurse will contact you to discuss the next steps.

Our bodies and moles are always changing, and we can’t guarantee that a mole that has been considered normal will always remain so. It’s important to be aware of any changes to the mole/pigmented lesion and to use the ABCDE rule to self-check.

What is the ABCDE rule?

Asymmetry – Melanoma lesions are usually asymmetrical and irregular in shape, whereas benign moles tend to be symmetrical.

Border – The border of early melanomas can be uneven and may present as a series of semi-circular curves or v-shaped points. Benign moles have smooth, even borders.

Colour – A melanoma may present as a variety of colours, and can in some instances become red, white or blue. Benign moles tend to be one colour, normally a single shade of brown.

Diameter – Melanomas tend to have a larger diameter than benign moles, typically greater than 6mm in diameter.

Evolving – Moles or lesions that begin to change in any way (eg size, shape, colour, elevation, bleeding, itching, crusting etc) must be reviewed.

Benefits of the service

  • It’s available in 50 stores across the UK
  • You can book an appointment online 
  • You’ll receive your results within 2 weeks
  • You can collect Boots Advantage Card points too

How much does the service cost?

  • The first mole/pigmented lesion scanned will cost £35
  • Each additional mole/pigmented lesion scanned within the one consultation will cost £15

If you wish to have more than four moles scanned we advise you to speak to your GP.

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