May I suggest a melanoma skin screening, BUT WAIT it is different now, the technology available today is not your parents or grandparents screening. We now have a choice beside the standard biopsy first, then tests to determine if your mole, growth, or lesion is cancerous.
This new procedure can eliminate the need for biopsies that are unnecessary. MelaFind® was cited as one of the Top 10 Medical Innovations for 2013 by the Cleveland Clinic and is the first and only FDA-cleared diagnostic tool that uses multi-spectral technology to scan and analyze objective data about a mole in order to help dermatologists determine which moles should be biopsied.
It provides dermatologists with the ability to see how the mole is growing from under the skin, up to 2.5 mm under the skin. By visiting this website http://www.melafind.com/you can location a dermatologist in the U.S. that uses MelaFind. View this video to discover just what is so groundbreaking about this technology; http://www.youtube.com/embed/nmxnaowpY9A?autoplay=1&html5=1.
So, now you may ask 'what is melanoma's and how do I know if I need to see a specialist'?
Your primary care physician can refer you to a MelaFind® dermatologist that has access to the Mela science available in the United States and abroad.
According to Dorland's Medical Dictionary, [moles sometimes applied loosely to any blemish of the skin, especially a pigmented one; atypical mole, dysplastic mole, dysplastic nevus, as a progressed lesion, an extensive description is a malignant neoplasm of melanocytes, arising de novo or from a preexisting benign nevus or lentigo maligna, occurring most often in the skin but sometimes in the oral cavity, esophagus, anal canal, vagina, leptomeninges, conjunctivae, or eye.] These are nothing to ignore!
Melanomas have a stage progression, when the stages progress beyond the circumference of the perfect circle and encroach beyond what appear to be normal that is a visit to your primary care provider and then the specialist referral. Watching the grown patterns of your moles can be life saving, as this type of cancer has a threshold of cure rate that is based on how advanced the lesion is at the time of discovery. If you are a current patient of a dermatologist, they will be proactive in alerting you to the correct steps to avoid a life threatening event.
The video attached to this article expands from the beginning stages to the extreme situation of new or recurring melanoma that would warrant new or other invasive methods to eradicate the body of the types of melanomas that you, as a patient, may have experienced. New treatments that regard the scientific nature of the past with the movement into the present, to ward off the body's own defenses to fight these types of special cancers.
As the doctor in the video explains, these cancers are more invasive and behave differently than other cancers, this type responds to treatment by hiding and not allowing the body to recognize the very element that is forming to a cancerous skin lesion. With new treatments and the new discovery methods that are offered by MelaFind®, patients are more equipped to address the needs specific to each patient.
Most of us enjoy the sun, but sunscreens and lotions only keep us partially protected. As with our eyes, we should be wearing a hat with a large brim, sunglasses to protect the eyes, and cover up the exposed portions of skin that has in the past contracted skin cancer or may have skin tags on that area that may have potential to become malignant.
Discuss with your doctor what other measures you can take in a proactive manner to avoid the fear and necessity by getting screened often and take advantage of new technology by taking your own skin health seriously!