Here in Kentucky, autumn is in full swing bringing with it cooler temperatures and fall colors. With the hot, sunny days of summer behind us, now is the time to be thinking about a skin cancer screening.
One in five Americans develop skin cancer at some point in their lives, and at least two people die of skin cancer in the US every hour. With early detection, however, successful treatment helps 99% of people diagnosed survive.
At Kentucky Skin Cancer Center, we understand the importance of regular skin exams. Dr. Robert Skaggs and our compassionate team provide the most advanced treatments in both our Franklin and Bowling Green, Kentucky offices.
We also know the best form of skin cancer treatment is prevention. That’s why we created this guide to help you understand who should have a skin cancer screening and how often. Read on to learn more!
Why are regular skin exams necessary?
Every year, more than one million Americans are diagnosed with nonmelanoma skin cancers and hundreds of thousands more are diagnosed with melanoma, a more serious form of skin cancer. Even though you look in the mirror every day, it can be difficult to tell if that new mole or freckle is harmless or something more.
To help find any cancerous spots early, it’s important to schedule regular skin exams with an experienced dermatologist. Dr. Skaggs recommends you give yourself regular skin checks at home as well as get comprehensive skin cancer screenings at Kentucky Skin Care Center.
In addition to helping detect skin cancer early, regular skin exams can ensure the best treatment possible. Early detection can also mean less invasive treatments, like surgery, are required and leave you with fewer scars.
Who should have a skin cancer screening and how often?
Everyone, regardless of skin color or tone, benefits from annual skin cancer screenings. In fact, people of color aren’t usually diagnosed until skin cancer has reached a later stage, making it more difficult to treat.
If you have a higher risk of skin cancer, Dr. Skaggs may recommend more frequent skin checks. Signs you might have a higher risk of developing skin cancers include having:
- Blonde or red hair, light eyes, and skin that sunburns or freckles easily
- A family history of melanoma
- A history of using tanning beds or machines
- An organ transplant
- A history of unusual or irregular moles
- A history of sunburns, particularly if you blistered
- A large number of moles (>50)
You may also be a candidate for more frequent exams if your work or hobbies mean you spend more time in the sun and exposed to harmful rays than an average person.
What happens if my exam reveals skin cancer?
If Dr. Skaggs finds an area of skin or skin growth that looks suspicious, he’ll take measures to ensure the best possible outcome for your continued health and wellness. As a skin cancer removal expert, Dr. Skaggs uses minimally invasive treatment methods to immediately remove precancerous, cancerous, and other suspicious or troublesome skin growths.
At Kentucky Skin Cancer Center, Dr. Skaggs removes cancerous growths in the office with treatments that are usually pain-free with local anesthetics. If you do have a growth removed in the office, you can return to your normal activities immediately as necessary downtime is rare.
How can I schedule my skin cancer screening?
Scheduling a skin cancer screening is easy at Kentucky Skin Cancer Center. A member of our caring team will give you instructions on how to prepare for your visit.
Contact the Kentucky Skin Cancer Center location nearest you or book online now and get a skin cancer screening and keep your skin healthy for years to come!