Swim season is upon us my friends, and that means long hours of sun exposure. There is no better time to read about things to look for regarding detection of skin cancer concerns.
Skin cancer is one of the most highly diagnosed types of cancers, with nearly five and half a million cases being treated every year in the U.S. One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime, and it is mostly all curable if detected early. So that is why it is important for a yearly full body exam from a medical professional to spot and treat any skin concerns. That along with a monthly routine of self-checks will possibly save a life.
Melanoma is the most dangerous form of skin cancer, but with early detection, it can be treated effectively. Spots, moles, freckles and skin growths should all be examined regularly using the A, B, C, D, E’s of Melonoma:
- A – Asymmetry: One half is unlike the other.
- B – Border: The outside lines are undefined, irregular or jagged.
- C – Coloring: The spot is varying in colors and shading. Some areas have brown, while some may have black or tan. Sometimes there are red, white and blue colors mixed in.
- D – Diameter: The spot is bigger than 6mm or the size of a pencil eraser.
- E – Evolving: The size, shape or color changes.
Also, other forms of skin cancer can include spots that bleed and don’t seem to heal and/or have the appearance that is pearly, flaky, wart-like spots. Any skin changes detected should always be followed by a skin exam with your dermatologist or skin care professional.
Before time spent outdoors, apply sunscreen and check the UV index. Find out more ways to stay safe in the sun at www.epa.gov/sunsafety.