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What to Expect from a Skin Cancer Check

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Regular skin cancer checks are very important when it comes to maintaining the overall health and wellbeing of individuals. The incidence of skin cancer is on the rise all over the world and this is why early detection is so crucial.

The patient will be asked

To undress down to their underwear so that the healthcare professional or the dermatologist can be thorough when checking for skin cancer. They can examine the skin on all parts of the body and this includes the areas of the body that are less exposed to the sun. A head-to-toe examination is needed for a thorough skin cancer check and every inch of skin will be inspected systematically by the healthcare professional. They will check for common skin cancer types like melanoma, squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma. The scalp, torso, neck, palms, limbs and soles will be examined along with the space in between the toes. The healthcare professional will look for signs of common skin cancers such as new growths, lesions that have uneven boundaries, lesions with varying colours, irregular moles or changes in existing moles. By detecting abnormalities early on, you will be able to improve your chances of successful treatment.

Pre-cancerous sunspots can be identified during a skin cancer check.

These lesions caused by sun damage are rough and scaly patches and they will be treated during the examination. A common treatment method is cryotherapy and this involves freezing the lesion so it can be removed. However, not every skin abnormality is cancerous so benign lesions will be noted in the cancer check. It is important to document these benign lesions so that any changes in these lesions can be monitored in the future. There are also advanced skin checks provided where AI total body imaging is used. This technology uses artificial intelligence to analyse skin lesions and track them. High resolution images of the entire body will be taken so that the subtle changes in lesions and moles over time can be detected. This technology increases the accuracy of early detection and monitoring. Another advanced skin checking method is the use of laser-induced plasma spectroscopy that is able to analyse skin lesions in real-time. Immediate information is provided by this method so that healthcare professionals are able to make decisions on the spot regarding further evaluation of the patient or treatment.

If the healthcare professional suspects

That a certain lesion on your skin is cancerous or if there is an uncertainty about the nature of the lesion, they will recommend a biopsy. Here, a small sample of the skin will be removed so that it can be analyzed in the laboratory. This will be done under local anesthesia so that your comfort is maintained. The skin tissue will be assessed by a pathologist under a microscope and this will help determine whether it is cancerous or not. This will also help determine the type of skin cancer and its stage so that a suitable treatment plan can be created.

Abraham Mcfarlane