What is a Skin Cancer Screening?
A skin cancer screening is an inspection of your skin by a medical professional such as a dermatologist. This process does not involve any bloodwork.
Why Get a Skin Cancer Screening?
Because skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the U.S., it is important to get checked for the early warning signs. Individuals of all colors and races can get skin cancer. There are different kinds of skin cancer, including basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma. With early skin cancer detection, the cure rate is much higher. Regular self-skin examinations can also help to find early signs of cancer.
Who Should Get a Skin Cancer Screening?
All individuals, regardless of where they live, should undergo a skin cancer screening once a year. Individuals who have a family history of melanoma in two or more blood relatives, have multiple atypical moles, or have precancerous lesions on their body should definitely undergo a skin cancer screening by a dermatologist and practice continued surveillance every 6-12 months.
How to Avoid Skin Cancer
Patients of all skin tones should avoid the use of tanning beds and reduce their time spent in direct sunlight, as UV light exposure can cause skin cancer. If you notice that any of your moles or growths have changed in size, shape, or color, or are simply concerned with a certain growth, schedule an appointment with your dermatologist.