Some melanomas grow very slowly and in the early stages may not show any obvious clues to their malignancy, even on close and careful examination using a dermatoscope. In rare cases such as these they may be diagnosed by monitoring an unusual ‘mole’ over time. This involves taking a digital photograph of the lesion with a magnified view through the dermatoscope, and then comparing the original image with a follow-up one taken at a later appointment. This is usually a 3 or 6 month interval, depending on the lesion. It’s important to note that mole monitoring is not suitable for raised lesions, as the risk of missing an invasive melanoma is too high. Any elevated, firm, and growing lesion should be examined by an expert immediately for malignancy.