A lifesaving visit to the dermatologist
One of the most important things we do in our office is a comprehensive full body skin exam. Here at RTD, the dermatoscope is used during the exam to get a better view of the lesion, its surface and internal structures, which gives us a better understanding if a lesion is benign or not. Prevention is our motto, but find it early is our resolute. We are here to make sure you continue to live life with the knowledge and knowhow to decrease your skin cancer risk.
Moles are common skin lesions. Almost every adult has a few of them. Some people are more susceptible genetically then others and may have one hundred. This is normal.
Most moles appear on the skin during childhood and adolescence. We expect moles will grow slowly as the child (or teen) grows. Some moles will darken, and others will lighten. These changes are expected and seldom a sign of melanoma, the most-serious form of skin cancer. Any sudden change in size or growth in a child, teen or adult is not expected and should be evaluated.
Adults can see new moles and other pigmented skin lesions grow throughout life. The importance of knowing your body, your moles and seeing a dermatologist for a full body skin exam annually helps prevent or find skin cancer early. Caught early, skin cancer including melanoma is highly treatable.
While this is the least common of the skin cancers, it can be the most lethal. This tumor arises in a clone of abnormal pigment-producing cells called melanocytes. This can rapidly transform and spread internally through the bloodstream and lymphatic channels of the body. This type of cancer can be associated with fair-skinned individuals, who often have a history of sun burning, but anyone is susceptible. Studies are showing an increase in skin cancer in Latinos.
Know the facts:
- A change to a mole or a new mole can be the first sign of melanoma
- You can find melanoma early by checking your own skin, pay attention
- If you see a mole or other sport that is growing, itching, bleeding, or changing in any way, immediately make an appointment to see a dermatologist.