It’s that time of year again that we start talking about getting your moles checked before you go on holiday. This is because the first sign of a melanoma or skin cancer if often the appearance of a new mole or a change in the appearance of an existing one. In addition, those of us with a large number of moles on our skin are at greater risk of melanoma.
As Doctors, we are probably guilty of overusing the saying that 'prevention is better than cure' but never is it more appropriate than when said in reference to skin cancer. I'm from the generation who grew up loving the sun and feeling encouraged to get as much of it as we could, at least without burning but in those days skin cancer awareness was much lower and the high streets were not then lined with tanning salons as many are nowadays. The 'year round tan' continues to be extremely popular and there is a concern that people are increasing their risk through over exposure to harmful UV rays from the sun outdoors and in the tanning booth - and that this is driving the continued rise in skin cancer cases.
The risk of skin cancer can't be easily exaggerated. Each year in the US there are more new cases of skin cancer than the combined incidence of cancers of the breast, colon, lung and prostate.
We run a mole assessment clinic in our Emsworth Clinic and in our Boxgrove, Chichester Clinic which can give you peace of mind if you’ve got concerns about any of your moles. It is much better to get moles or other skin concerns checked out as soon as you notice any issues with them. Like with all cancers the sooner you get a diagnosis and the sooner you can start treatment the better.
Things to look out for with moles:
•Changes to the shape
•Changes to the colour – getting darker, becoming patchy or multi shaded
•Loss of symmetry - the two halves of your mole do not look the same
•Itching or pain
•Bleeding or becoming crusty
We can provide a mole check for you and your family to ensure that all is well. We can screen the whole family together for just £140*
Whatever your concerns we can help - just give us a call on 01243 388 712 or use our online booking system.
*Terms and Conditions apply